The goddess from Bengal
IT’s been a long haul from being one of the most powerful actresses of Bengali films to becoming a lead star in a Hindi serial. Indrani Haldar crossed the rubicon and stepped into the world of television when she was selected to play the pivotal role in B.R. Chopra’s Ma Shakti On Star Plus from among hundreds of aspirants.
But television is nothing new for the gifted actress. In fact she started her career as a child artiste in the hit Bengali serial Tero Parban. Ever since then she has been as comfortable on TV as she is doing films and theatre. Her moment of glory came when she received the National Award for her gut-wrenching performance of an upright school teacher in Dahan.
Of late, she has also been focusing her energies on TV serials. She did Fakir, a telefilm by Gautam Ghosh and followed it with Basu Chatterjee’s Hamari Shaadi. But she says Ma Shakti has been the most challenging as she plays four roles those of Goddesses Saraswati, Kali, Lakshmi and Shakti.
actress," Viewers simply love my style. Most viewers have been
mesmerised by my eyes." Immodesty in a goddess is best forgiven!
It’s a year old and is fast-making a place for itself in investigative journalism. Satya on DD News has been making waves with its hard-hitting and in-depth features.
And the issues the show tackles are both bold and unusual — The Worldly Yearnings of Nuns, Unlicensed Abortion Clinics, Child Unfriendly Juvenile Act, Can men Be Sexually Harassed At The Workplace? Why Are Hijras So Regressive and more. The programme doesn’t just resort to reportage but delves into the subject with interviews, case studies and live footage.
For example, when the show
focused on growing alcoholism in women, it did not just stop at case studies. It
looked at the coping mechanism of the victim and the people around her, a
psychological analysis of an addictive personality as also the wide difference
in acceptance of women and men alcoholics. Produced and directed by Gayatri
Khosla and presented by Shefalee Talwar, Satya has three segments — an
investigative story, a debate or an issue and a light-hearted feature. All
interviews and anchor links are done on location which explains why the show
pulsates with energy. Had the show been on one of the satellite channels it
would have got star billing.
Small screen dreams
"Let’s get this straight," she says with a wave of her hand, "I didn’t want to be an actress in the first place. I just got pushed into it," But now, after a hit film like Papa Kehte Hain, Mayuri Kango says she wants to be primarily a TV actress.
Her first serial Nargis Mondays 9 p.m. on DD-Metro is already hitting the high spots. It is the story of a young girl who shatters her parents’ dreams by marrying against their wishes.
"This is the kind of meaty role I was looking for in films but all they wanted me to do was the dance-and-song routines. That’s not my idea of acting," says Mayuri who got through her IIT entrance exam but opted for acting instead.
Besides Nargis, Mayuri is doing the lead in Thoda Gham Thodi Khushi and has TV producers queuing up with offers. But she’s saying no to most of the blink-and-you-miss-me kind of roles.
"Frankly I’d like to do a real good comedy. But there isn’t too much talent around. The comic serials on air virtually make you cry. If somebody comes along with a really funny script I’d accept it without a thought. But knowing scriptwriters’ sense of humour, Mayuri may have to wait for a long time!
This is a treat for lovers of Urdu and Hindi poetry. Adabi Cocktail on Zee TV is a blend of different shades of ghazal and kavita. The programme lends these literary gems to music and then has a celebrity guest analyse the thought of the poet.
Each episode is devoted to a common topic — Chehre, Mohabbat Zulf, Jawani etc which different poets have tackled in different moods. For example, one could be a sad ghazal on the theme of love and another a very light-hearted Hindi poem on the same theme. The main criteria of selection here is the quality of poetry.
Scripted by Nida Fazli who wrote the lyrics of Sarfarosh and anchored by Tom Alter, the show has music by Ustad Ghulam Mustafa Khan who gives a new meaning to Urdu and Hindi poetry with his amazing sense of music. Which all makes Adabi Cocktail worth a dekko for ghazal fans.
Colours of India
In a country rich in culture and tradition, adventures are limitless. From April 15 to 20, 10 p.m. Discovery Channel presents a special week-long programming event celebrating the breathtaking landscape, age-old rituals and colourful people of India.
The Journeys begin with Beneath Indian Skies: Temples & Pilgrims, an insightful look at the sacred rituals of India. Next viewers go Beyond The Himalayas for a modern-day excursion along the ancient Silk Route between Kashgar and Dunguang. Then a bewildering expedition leads viewers through the link that binds seemingly incongruous subjects in Sentimental Journeys.
The show also takes viewers to northern India with host Andrew Daddo who visits the awe-inspiring Taj Mahal and explores the Himalayas in a jeep. Then there are all-night Onam festivities in Kerala as also the world-renowned camel fair in Pushkar and the rat temple in Deshnook in Rajasthan. A breath-taking journey to some of the country’s breath-taking locales.
— Mukesh Khosla