Sunday, April 27, 2008

Washington Cheerleaders To Extend India Visit 

Posted by James at 5:17 PM ET

By Emily Wax
Washington Post Foreign Service
The Washington Redskins cheerleaders, who have pompomed and kicked their way onto Indian cricket pitches over the past week, are in high demand.

Vijay Mallya, a beer and airline billionaire who invited the cheerleaders to usher in a new, flashier era of cricket in India by cheering for a few matches, has asked the squad to turn out in their go-go boots and short shorts for the remaining 10 matches of the Bangalore Royal Challengers, which Mallya owns.

The cheerleaders currently in India will return home at the end of the month, while other squad members will arrive from Washington to finish out the season.

"This is a real compliment," Donald Wells, the Redskins cheer choreographer, said Friday. "Because we will now travel to the team's away games, we will get to see more of the country, including the Taj Mahal. It's a dream for us all."

In his efforts to bring the cheerleaders to India, Mallya was helped by Venkat Vardhan, one of the biggest entertainment event promoters in India, and George Veras, an American and a longtime promoter of entertainment events in India.

The cheerleaders' attire touched off a bit of controversy in this conservative Hindu nation. Although Indian Premier League cricket has featured cheerleaders from around the world, most have been dressed more modestly than the Redskins squad.

But according to Veras, "India is ready for this type of entertainment."

And here is the music video featuring the Redskins Cheerleaders as the Royal Challenger Cheerleaders:

It took 12 hours to produce the video, which is now playing constantly on MTV India and around the world.

Go behind the scenes and see the making of the video here.

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