Lotus FM presenter Keshav Dass on juggling a career in radio and performing arts

Keshav Dass. Picture: Supplied

Keshav Dass. Picture: Supplied

Published Jun 10, 2024


Stage actor and performer Keshav Dass grew up listening to Lotus FM but little did he know that one day he would land a show on the much-loved Indian radio station.

Dass is one of the new presenters on Lotus FM. He hosts “The Night Café”, a show designed to soothe listeners with breezy content, light conversation and local and international music.

Dass’s career in broadcasting started in 2016 at an online radio station called MegaZone Bollywood, where he co-hosted a weekend morning show, “Breakfast in Bed”.

“It was fun and snappy and precisely what you needed to kick-start your morning. Four years later, I left to work at Hindvani, in search of a larger audience.

“I co-presented ‘The Saturday Shake Up’, a brunch entertainment show which attracted a lot of listeners and became quite popular,” said Dass, who also hosted the “Chart Show” on Sundays.

“I had my finger on the pulse. I was able to celebrate Hindi cinema old and new, took listeners on a tour through the lives of their favourite Bollywood stars, and most importantly, showcased the week's trending Top 20 chart.”

Dass’s presenting journey on Lotus FM started in April but, throughout his childhood, he had been subconsciously preparing for this moment.

“I grew up with my parents constantly playing Lotus FM in the background. Radio was the added member of my family and music, a big part of my life.

“I listened to Varshan Sookhun and Vikash Mathura on Lotus FM. These are South African Indian men who I draw tons of inspiration from for being pioneers in their industries.

“It’s such an exciting era, now that radio has evolved and changed over the years. I found myself wanting to be a presenter after becoming a listener, so that I could bring in a new, fun energy to it.

“I knew almost eight years ago that it was something I wanted to be passionately involved in. I’m happiest when I make the people around me happy.”

Keshav Dass. Picture: Supplied

The self-proclaimed “night manager” said he enjoyed putting his show together and having listeners respond positively to it.

“I’m such a people’s person and the best way to be in everyone’s living room or car is to be on radio. I’m a conversationalist and it’s something I get excited about.

“I think radio is an understated community shaper. We do tend to inspire and educate through entertainment, and radio is one those mediums for it.”

“On ‘The Night Café’, there’s light talk, music and fun and interactive on-air games. We have something new and appealing to offer every day.”

Dass said he wanted to bring listeners “a friend they can have with them whenever they tune in to the station”.

“I love interacting with and connecting with people and I would love to extend that part of my personality to all of the listeners tuning in.

“In the way that radio was a part of my family growing up, I hope to be a part of theirs.”

Away from radio, Dass enjoys being on stage. Over the years he’s performed in and choreographed many live stage productions including the “Chalo Cinema” series under the Nateshwar Dance Company and “Bayview to Bollywood”.

He has also performed alongside Bollywood superstars Madhuri Dixit, Ranveer Singh, Priyanka Chopra and Sidharth Malhotra at the South Africa Indian Film and Television Awards (Saifta).

“I have performed at the reception of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and other big productions like the MTV awards and shared the stage with living legend Asha Bhosle in her farewell tour to South Africa.

“The performing arts is something that is close to my heart. I am a patron to the arts and when I am not on stage one can find me in the audience,” he said.

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