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The Lux Style Awards nominations for excellence in 2015 were announced in an event speckled with stardust, humour and the usual rise of controversies.

Mocktails did the rounds while guests – mostly this year’s nominees, judges, jury members and the media – waited for the official proceedings to begin. Grandiose LSA branding provided an apt backdrop for photo ops while the more adventurous ventured inside the ‘LSA Booth’, a space designed to make anyone inside appear to be on a magazine cover. Moving inside the main show area, a lavish round table arrangement held together an interior speckled with white floral arrangements, crystal ornamentation and an overall luxurious set up. The press conference held to announce nominations for the 15th annual Lux Style Awards, in a nutshell, was more extravagant than the actual awards were in 2014 (when the LSAs were reduced to a high tea).

The event was primarily hosted by the lovely Mahira Khan, who’s current Lux girl as well as one of the biggest stars of the country and she was joined by “the biggest Butt in the business, Ahmed Ali Butt” and Yasir Hussain, who lamented the fact that his movie, Karachi Se Lahore, had not made the cut. Adnan Malik stepped on stage to announce the Fashion Nominations, reminding us that he was once actually nominated for Best Model and Farhan Saeed read the honours for Music Nominations. Between the five of them, the evening remained delightfully lighthearted and entertaining. Once it began, that is. The event, which was scheduled to begin at 4pm and end at 6pm, actually started around 6 – a fact that can be blamed on the late arrival of some of the biggest stars. Those who did turn up on time – notably Noor Hassan and Ali Safina, were visibly and justifiably annoyed at the endless wait.

Yasir Hussain, Farhan Saeed, Urwa Hocane (in an inexplicable Princess Leia avatar), Sarwat Gillani and Noor Hasan.

Yasir Hussain, Farhan Saeed, Urwa Hocane (in an inexplicable Princess Leia avatar), Sarwat Gillani and Noor Hasan.

You could say that the endless wait was almost worth it. One did expect more nominees to turn up, especially the ones who were in town, but the presence of Mahira, Humayun Saeed, Farhan Saeed, Urwa Hocane, Zeb Bangash, Amir Adnan, Hasnain Lehri, Amna Baber and Fouzia Aman from the fashion industry – amongst others – provided ample starlight. Moreover, the Lux Style Awards do enjoy the unique position of being the only independent awards show in Pakistan. Other award shows, mostly run by channels, are primarily held to honour their own productions, whether films or television shows. Lux remains the only neutral platform that unites the industry and brings excellence in film, fashion, music and television on one platform. Controversies are part of the package deal and as expected, protests and candlelight vigils (on Facebook!) began in support of the un-nominated.

“This is the only platform that is independent and not affiliated with a channel,” Humayun Saeed said at the end of the event. “It is the only event that does not celebrate just television and film but also fashion and music. And the fact that this is the only event that has been continuing for 15 years speaks volumes on its credibility. I would say that other award shows began in inspiration of the LSAs.”

“A whole lot of energy and passion and hard work has gone into coming this far,” Shazia Syed spoke at the press conference, reminding everyone that she has been part of the process throughout and would now commit to taking it further. “The LSAs have become a platform for everyone and we will try and innovate and bring something new to it every year.” She thanked the jury and the media for consistently supporting them in this 15-year journey.

Back to the press conference, Yasir Hussain and Ahmed Ali Butt gave the audience a welcome teaser of what to expect from the grand event, which has been scheduled for end-July in Karachi. Who will host the Lux Style Awards 2016 is still a mystery but one thing is for sure: the LSAs will bring Pakistan’s biggest stars under one roof.

– This article was originally published in Instep, The News on June 1, 2016


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