Photo Credit: Karina Lidia

Pasha Bocarie is currently starring as the sly and devious Rakesh in the hit ITV series Emmerdale, but Pasha isn’t just a great actor and pretty face but has a lot of hidden talents under his belt.

A musician, sportsman and all-round nice bloke, Pasha has worked hard from a young age without the support of his parents to achieve his success. If anyone should be a role model to our younger generation, Pasha’s name should be high on that list.

We had the honour of chatting to Pasha about his time on Emmerdale and his passions.

We can currently see you in the long-running hit TV series, Emmerdale, as regular Rakesh Kotecha. How did you land a part in this iconic TV series?

I auditioned my ass off! Seriously, it was a long process that took over three months, many auditions and a screen test. It’s one of those things when as you get through to the next stage the stakes get higher and the competition harder. I always knew I had it in me and I felt it from day one, but you just never know in this business. That’s where the luck comes in!

Photo Credit: Karina Lidia
Photo Credit: Karina Lidia

Rakesh is quite devious and sly, how do you find playing this kind of character?

I find it interesting to play him because I, as a person, am very different, so it’s interesting for me as an actor to explore this side of a character. It is more of a challenge and to be honest fun!

You must spend a lot of time up in Yorkshire, as a Londoner how easy/hard has it been to adapt to life in the Yorkshire Dales?

It’s been hard; I don’t know anyone up there and haven’t really been able to explore this beautiful country. My lifestyle and work schedule simply hasn’t permitted me to do so, but I’m making more of an effort in my second year!

How have the rest of the cast taken to you as a newcomer?

I had a lot of support from my co-star Fiona Wade in the beginning. She understood what it’s like to be the newcomer and was always very encouraging and supportive. It’s a great ensemble and we all have a laugh and socialise when schedules permit!

Fiona Wade
Fiona Wade

Can you let us into any juicy storylines Rakesh may have coming up?

I can, but I would have to kill you!

We hear you’re also a musician, Can you tell us more?

I play 5 instruments mainly percussion based, but guitar also. I love drums and spent most of my teenage years enjoying mastering my way around a drum kit! I had a tough childhood and in order to escape I would lose myself in music, it was food for my soul! When I get the time I lock myself up in a studio and play for hours. I forget about all my worries and just PLAY! In that moment you are in control and at the same time free to express yourself without interruption; it’s a feeling of emancipation!

You’ve played mainly in rock/punk bands, what turns you on about this music style?

Actually, that’s not true, I’ve played in Jazz, World, Dance, Punk and of course in Rock bands. For me music has no boundaries, I love all styles, I enjoy improvisation, music with energy and good composition.

Back to acting, we’ve seen you in many British TV shows such as Law and Order UK and Silent Witness as well as in the film, as Kabir in Pusher and on the stage. Which do you prefer and why?

That’s a tough one, the stage is a formidable place to be if you are an actor because you have to deliver and engage not just with your fellow actor, but with the hundreds of people sitting and watching you. The connection with the audience is much stronger as everything is externalized, whereas it’s the opposite with film and TV, everything is internalized. Which one is harder, well that depends on the individual, but both require different skill sets. What I love about film is the opportunity to be as real as possible, where you can flesh out a character probably the most, by the way, he looks and behaves in his actual surroundings, a much more real and intimate experience!

Your acting career has also taken you to LA, where you actually studied at the Margie Haber Studios and to play the role of Adnan in the critically acclaimed Betrayed at the Lyric Theatre. How does that differ to Theatre in the UK?

Well, I was lucky with the theatre company who put on ‘Betrayed’, they were all alumni of the American Academy of Dramatic Arts and real trailblazers trying to galvanise theatre in LA. I was astonished at how truthful their storytelling was and how committed they were to telling it! I can honestly say that play there was nowhere to hide; it was just a very gruelling and emotional experience, one that I’m far richer as a human for undertaking!

Have you any stories you can share about your time in LA?

Lots! Maybe over a drink, I’ll share some!!

Can you tell us something interesting about yourself that no one would know?

I was once a Doorman in a London nightclub for a year, it taught me a lot about myself and that brains really are better than Braun!

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