Music, dance and movies all have their place at the International Indian Film Academy Awards & Weekend, but the IIFA Rocks concert and fashion show is a celebration of the glamor portion of Bollywood, says event host and actor Vivek Oberoi.
"I've worked with IIFA Rocks several times before, and it's the best because you have the best of Bollywood coming out in all their best clothes, to set new trends in terms of fashion," he said.
Award-nominated playback singers — who belt the songs that actors lip-synch to — Ankit Tiwari, Monali Thakur and Bhoomi Trivedi are among the concert performers. A rock band fronted by Farhan Akhtar, a co-host of the April 26 main awards show, lists IIFA Rocks as a tour stop online. The fashion show's three designers are not yet announced.
Invite-only IIFA Rocks starts at 8 p.m. April 24 at the Tampa Convention Center, but it's preceded at 6 p.m. by the weekend's first green carpet event, which is open to fans.
"IIFA has been that bridge between Bollywood celebrities and the fans," Oberoi said. "IIFA has been that platform where we get to interact with these people, the fans who really put us out there on the map."
This year's IIFA Awards, held in a different country each year, are particularly special, he said.
"Everywhere we've gone, we've always had fans reaching out asking, 'When are you guys coming to America?' " said Oberoi, who studied acting in New York.
Oberoi, 37, also is nominated for best performance in a negative role (a.k.a. best villain) in superhero movie Krrish 3, playing a superpowered paraplegic who creates an army of half-animal mutants as he tries to cure his own paralysis.
With relatives in the bay area, Oberoi said he's excited to return to Tampa — provided he doesn't have to deal with lovebugs.
"It's not as crazy and gritty as Miami but it's so beautiful, so you get the best of both worlds in Tampa," he said. "You can relax, unwind. There are beautiful beaches nearby. The weather is always fantastic. … Tampa will be exceptional. "