At the 95th Academy Awards on 12th March 2023, ‘Naatu Naatu’ from RRR was performed live on stage by singers Rahul Sipligunj and Kaala Bhairava. This wasn’t surprising, given that it’s usually the norm for all of the songs nominated in the Best Original Song category to be performed live at the Oscars. The singers gave a truly electrifying performance of the song, which also won the Academy Award for Best Original Song.
Here’s the energetic performance of “Naatu Naatu” from #RRR at the #Oscars. https://t.co/ndiKiHeOT5 pic.twitter.com/Lf2nP826c4
— Variety (@Variety) March 13, 2023
Indian actress Deepika Padukone took to the Oscars stage to present the performance, which was considered by many on social media to be the best of the night. While we surely missed seeing Ram Charan and Jr. NTR perform on the stage, their absence was more than made up by the impressive dancers, and of course, the talented singers.
“Do you know Naatu? Because if not, you’re about to.”
– Queen Deepika Padukone announces ‘Naatu Naatu’ live performance at the #Oscars
— LetsCinema (@letscinema) March 13, 2023
While we may know all about RRR and ‘Naatu Naatu‘, let’s take a closer look at who Rahul Sipligunj and Kaala Bhairava are. Here is everything you must know about them.
Who is Rahul Sipligunj?
Rahul Sipligunj is a popular playback singer, songwriter and independent musician who has sung several popular songs for the Telugu film industry. The singer gained widespread fame after winning the third season of the reality TV show Bigg Boss Telugu in 2019.
Sipligunj began his singing career in 2009 with the song ‘College Bulloda’ in the Telugu film Josh. Since then, he has sung for many popular Telugu films including Eega, Krishnam Vande Jagadgurum, Lion, Rangasthalam, Kanchana 3 and of course, RRR. Some of his most popular songs in the Telugu film industry include ‘Vaastu Bagunde’, You are My Darlingo’, and ‘Ranga Ranga Rangasthalana’. For the last one, he was nominated for the Filmfare Award for Best Male Playback Singer – Telugu. He has even sung in Spanish in the song ‘Melikalu’ from Cameraman Gangatho Rambabu.
Sipligunj has also delivered his fair share of hits as an independent artist, with some of his most popular songs being ‘Maakkikirkiri‘, ‘Poor Boy’, ‘Daawath’ and ‘Galli Ka Ganesh’.
Apart from his singing, the singer is also known for his philanthropic activities and has been actively involved in social causes.
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Who is Kaala Bhairava?
Known for his powerful and soulful voice, Kaala Bhairava is a playback singer, songwriter and music composer who primarily works in the Telugu film industry. Son of renowned music composer M.M. Keeravani (who composed the smash hit ‘Naatu Naatu), Bhairava is also a distant relative of director S. S. Rajamouli.
Like Sipligunj, Bhairava also made his debut as a playback singer in the early 2010s, with the song ‘Gjijigadu‘ in the 2011 Telugu film Rajanna. He rose to fame with songs like ‘Oka Praanam’, ‘Vandhaai Ayya’, ‘Oru Yaagam’ and ‘Dandaalayyaa’ from Baahubali: The Conclusion becoming massive hits. Some of his other popular songs include ‘Dosti’, ‘Spirit of Jersey’, and ‘Chaitanya Ratham’. Apart from this, he has also composed music for Telugu films like Colour Photo and Mathu Vadalara.
‘Naatu Naatu’ performed live at the 2023 Oscars
All five songs nominated at the 2023 Oscars were performed during the ceremony, including ‘Naatu Naatu’. Although it was earlier reported that Lady Gaga won’t be able to perform ‘Hold My Hand’ from Tom Gun: Maverick as she was busy shooting for Joker 2, she somehow managed to make it to the Oscars to give a stripped-down, acoustic performance of her song.
The five nominees for the Best Original Song category were as follows:
- ‘This Is A Life’ from Everything Everywhere All At Once – Ryan Lott, David Byrne and Mitski
- ‘Applause’ from Tell it Like a Woman – Diane Warren
- ‘Hold My Hand’ from Top Gun: Maverick – Lady Gaga
- ‘Lift Me Up’ from Black Panther Forever – Rihanna, Tems, Ryan Coogler and Ludwif Goransson
- ‘Naatu Naatu’ from RRR – M. M. Keeravani and Chandrabose
RRR and Naatu Naatu’s impressive awards run
RRR, starring Ram Charan and Jr NTR, has had a truly impressive run on the awards circuit in Hollywood. It all started when S. S. Rajamouli won the prestigious New York Film Critics award for Best Director. After that, the Telugu blockbuster has been cited by many award bodies, including the Critics’ Choice Movie Awards and the Golden Globes. Its win today at the Oscars offers the perfect bookend to its incredible awards journey.
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(Hero image credits: Courtesy Jio Saavn and Spotify)
(Feature image credits: Courtesy Instagram/Rahul Sipligunj)
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Answer: Naatu Naatu will be performed at the 2023 Oscars on March 12.
Answer: Naatu Naatu was filmed in Kyiv at the Presidential Palace.
Answer: Unofficially, RRR is an abbreviation for Rajamouli, Ram Charan and Rama Rao. Officially, however, RRR is also considered to be an abbreviation of its tagline Rise, Roar, Revolt.
Answer: Rahul Sipligunj and Kaala Bhairava are the singers of Naatu Naatu.