I am not FROM Khaptad but FOR Khaptad

Nepalnamcha is very happy to offer you an interview by Ashok Silwal with Mannsi Agrawal, who recently launched a breathtaking advertising video about Khaptad. As well as awesome and captivating images, she created a real alphabet from K (kind) to D (divine) passing through H (happy) and P (paradise)…. She has been involved in all the creative process, being also a writer, with a very professional technique and also convincing enthusiasm from her heart, in the service of a beautiful place that wants to grow and of tourist perspective. Deeply thank you Mannsi for your great passionate job in the tourist field and here artistic one too.

Your Khaptad video is really exciting and breathes love for this region. It seems you are from there. I know, you are not from there but you are for Khaptad. What do you want to say Mannsi ?
I am not from Khaptad but I have heard about it many times. And I heard about it first 13 years ago and ever since I wanted to go there. I think I am for any place that wants to grow and that is beautiful and that has good intentions. Yes, therefore I am for Khaptad.

Can it be called just an advertising video? Your gestures and the tone of your voice is so convincing that it seems more than advertising.
Of course! This video was created for people to understand and learn about the beauty of Khaptad. So, yes in that way it can be called an advertisement. But, everything I said was genuine because I said it from my heart. Maybe that’s why it sounds really convincing.

Why do you mention Switzerland, New Zealand and Canada comparing with Khaptad?
I did not compare them with Khaptad . What I said was when you see the beauty of Khaptad, it reminds you of those places and that was the only way for me to grab the attention of the audience in the video. A lot of people who earlier used to travel abroad before the covid now have started traveling domestically and which is why it was a great way for me to synthesis them to the fact that there is a beautiful place as beautiful as Switzerland, Canada, and New Zealand within Nepal itself and maybe we should give it a try.

You found the idea of the letters? K-kind, H-happy, A-adventure, P-paradise, T-tasty, A-abundant, D-divine…?
Yes, absolutely I put in a lot of thought into working out my script and I thought of this 5-6 days before I went to Khaptad. I came out with these alphabets and I was really happy that they matched together.

Do they say exactly what you have to say or you can change a little? I mean: you have a script?
Everything that I say is my own word. I would never follow anybody else’s script because I feel that more than anything else I am a writer and a speaker. My voice, my originality, and my authenticity are very important to me, So the script is mine 100%. Nobody has told me what to say. And nobody ever told me what to say for 7 reasons either.

Did the video take a lot of work and a great professional team … with a helicopter too?
I went by helicopter. We mounted one of the go pros on the helicopter. So, yes there are a few helicopter shots. There are a few drone shots, The team was primarily two people, one cinematographer and me. And although now it looks very professionally shot and like there must have been a huge team. We didn’t have a huge budget to tackle a huge team.

Did you feel just an ‘actress’ working or really feel this region special to your heart?
No, I do not feel like an actor because an actor is someone who generally mouths the dialogue or who says dialogues while it’s written by somebody else and conceptualized by somebody else. In my case, I feel like the actor, director, script writer, editor, conceptualizer, idea creator everything all into one because not only do I choose my own clothes, not only do I write the scripts, I do research, give my opinion on the editing and I am involved in every step of the process. So, I definitely don’t feel like an actor. I am much more involved because every video that I make, I am involved in the creative process from point a to z.

Did you know this place before the video?
I heard about Khaptad and its beauty, I knew about Khaptad and Khaptad Baba. And before I went to Khaptad I did a lot of research because that’s what I do. I know a lot about technical details and of places well in terms of geography. But I choose not to keep all that in the video because the common man doesn’t care, they want to look at it from a tourist perspective.

If you had to choose a letter and its meaning of KHAPTAD, which will you choose?
P-Paradise. Khaptad is paradise. It is too beautiful.

There are beautiful images of you dancing. Do you like dancing?
I love dancing. I did not actually dance in Khaptad. It was more like showing off the ethenic dress that I was wearing. Yes, I love dancing. But, I am not a good dancer.

You are a beautiful girl. Do you think the physical aspect is important in advertising language?
Thank you for calling me beautiful. I am not sure if I think I am beautiful but I think for me what works, people don’t see my videos to see someone beautiful dancing on the hills. They watch my videos for the content for the meaning behind the words.

Do you think that women are more passionate and more able to express their enthusiasm?
No, It’s very relative. My father for example is not a woman yet he is extremely passionate. And I know a lot of women who don’t care less. So, it’s very very personal and it has nothing to do with gender.

Finally thank you Mannsi for your valuable time and answers.

Cover photo by Jholey.

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