Prashant Tamrakar has been turning heads in the fashion world for three decades. He isn’t just a model but also a choreographer, actor, and founder of Big Bell Edutainment and Fashion Network Nepal (FNN), which is an e-commerce and fashion business platform. Tamrakar is a trendsetter whose ingenious ideas continue to shape the fashion industry in Nepal. He is determined to make the fashion space a viable one for the younger generation.
“Fashion is a lifestyle. It’s not just about putting on nice clothes. It’s about expressing your desires, being inventive, and figuring out how to use what you have to your advantage. When basic needs turn into something luxurious, that’s when you’ve got fashion,” he says. Talking about his style, he says it reflects the confidence and ease he feels within.
Tamrakar was just 17 when he started modeling. It was a largely unexplored territory in Nepal back then. There were little to no opportunities. The decision to audition was a bold one, he confesses, one that he is now glad he took. But it wasn’t easy to make a name for himself. Connecting with the media, both national and international, was challenging.
It also didn’t help that he didn’t have anyone to look up to during those early days. “We made lots of mistakes and learned things the hard way. I’m proud of how far I’ve come. I’m in a good place and I want my work to inspire the younger generation,” he says.
In 1994, he made history by becoming the first male model to represent Nepal on the international stage at Manhunt International in Singapore and Graviera in India. The international exposure introduced him to various professions like makeup artistry, event management, and fashion design. His foray into fashion choreography, however, came as a detour when he was training as a model under a Norwegian choreographer.
Leveraging these global experiences, he officially ventured into the event management business and choreography afterward. His company, he claims, was perhaps the first event management company to get registered in Nepal at that time.
Tamrakar says when he started, 30 years ago, the fashion industry was more like a small club. There weren’t many people involved in it. But now Tamrakar, who is in his 50s, says everything is big-scale now. It takes a village to put up a show. From makeup artists, choreographers, and event managers to stylists and fashion designers, a lot of people are involved in the making of a fashion extravaganza. He sees this change as a huge win in life.
As an entrepreneur, he is determined to take things even further and make the fashion industry in Nepal a big, booming business. He says he wants to give a platform to those with the skills and talent to take fashion forward.
But Tamrakar doesn’t believe in limiting himself to just one thing which is perhaps why he took up acting as well. During his modeling days, he was offered quite a few movies. But due to his focus on his business, he decided not to take them up. When things were a lot more settled, he decided to give it a shot.
In 2017, he took up the role of the villain in the movie ‘Aishwarya’. The movie was a hit and people took notice of Tamrakar. He could act and act well. That much was evident. Following that, he bagged roles in other movies like ‘Captain’ and ‘Ranveer’. As of now, he’s working on a few South Indian projects, including one titled ‘Hitman’, which will be out soon.
The versatile actor, model, and choreographer is also busy with his reality show projects like Nepali Beauty Star and Nepal Fashion Festival. He is also the official choreographer of Miss Universe Nepal. “I focus on teaching good habits, building a strong work ethic, and emphasizing the importance of dedication,” he says. Working with his team, he aims to bring out the best in each young individual, emphasizing their uniqueness.
Tamrakar also champions a few causes like cancer awareness, environment conservation, skill development, and education through his company that he founded 18 years ago. He is involved with a few social organizations and businesses as well. He has a lot on his plate and though juggling it all can sometimes be taxing, he says he wouldn’t have it any other way.
Tamrakar says he is on a mission to give the fashion industry a makeover. He dreams of having a fashion council in Nepal to take industry issues to the policy level for investment and budget decisions. “We’ve got great talent, but we need a platform for the industry to grow,” he says.
As a staunch supporter of sustainable fashion, he says Nepal needs a fresh business approach that’s economically viable. This, he says, will ensure sustainability and stability in the market. He believes that investment in the textile, handlooms, and handicraft industries can boost the fashion market and thus the economy of the country. “Our old-school trends can integrate with the new fashion and tech trends to boost production,” he says.