S(three) Shakti: Hema Malini, Esha and Ahana Deol
Hema Malini on dance and her daughters
Malini - woman, sensual danseuse, doting mother,
editor, actress and director. There is so much to her
dynamic multifaceted personality that cannot be contained
in a nutshell. She wielded such strong commercial clout
at the peak of her acting career, that actors like Dev
Anand and Rajesh Khanna had to turn to her to give them
that much wanted hit. She was thrown out of her first
film, a Tamil one by director Shridhar in 1964, because
she had no star appeal! She began her career opposite
Raj Kapoor in Sapnon ka Saudagar (1968) and became
the eternal Dream Girl of Hindi cinema.
Malini is the captivating heroine of many a Hindi film,
director and producer of much talked about television
serials 'Noopur' and 'Women of India,'
the first-ever woman to head the National Film Development
Corporation, editor of a biligual women's magazine
and mother of two daughters, Esha and Ahana
Deol born of a volatile North-South Dharmendra-Hema
Malini combination. Through all this express activity
called 'life' she never lost focus on her first love
the contrary, she has embellished this part, with technical
know-how she gained from her films and television experience
to create spectacular dance ballets like Ramayan,
Meera, Durga, Mahalaxmi, Savitri, Radha-Krishna and
Nrityamalika. On the anvil are plans to create
a state-of-the-art academy called the 'NatyaVihar
We spent some exclusive moments with this sensual
beauty and her daughters, Esha and Ahana Deol during
harrowing moments of beautification in the Green Room
before a dance performance of the trio.
there could be a mother hen, it is Hema Malini. Fretting
and fuming at her daughters' casual attitude before
the performance, she looks over their makeup with microscopic
precision. This perfectionist expects nothing but the
best. As Esha holds a closed eye for the dramatic application
of eyeliner, 15 year old Ahana rests casually on the
sofa lost in teenage concerns and Mama throws at them
threatening words in Tamil.
"I am very tense about my daughters' performance.
We have been practising all week together but I still
am not confident of us dancing together. This will be
our first time. I am not so much worried about Esha
as I am about Ahana. Ahana is Mamma's baby and even
on stage she sticks close to me. I have to keep whispering
to her to maintain distance during the performance,"
says Hema Malini, as she glances affectionately at Ahana.
The interview is interrupted with typical Tamilian 'Aiyoos
and Aamaas,' from her daughters.
asked about how it feels dancing for the first time
with her daughters, Hema says, "It is a very
different experience dancing with both of them. I have
danced with Esha before, now I will have Ahana dancing
alongside also. I will perform Bharatnatyam, while my
daughters perform Odissi. It was all unplanned. Esha
did not have busy shooting schedules so I asked her
to dance with me. Ahana had also learnt a few dance
items so I thought why not Ahana also. Someday she has
to perform, this could be the best opportunity."
However, it is not Bharatanatyam, but the hauntingly
beautiful Odissi that Esha and Ahana have chosen as
their form of self-expression.
Is Hema Malini a very pushy mother? "My daughters
are busy with their studies, their course and their
friends. If I leave it to them they will never learn
Bharatnatyam or any kind of art expression. I have been
able to kindle their interest in dance, but with time
they will learn to love it and will thank me for it,"
Hema says with the enthusiasm of a mother. She believes,
"Because of dance I was able to join films.
So I am sure it will help Esha and she will have to
make time for it. In spite of my busy film shooting
schedules, I never stopped giving performances. That
was the only way I could keep in touch with dance."
Esha, with Odissi makeup and hairdo, asserts, "In
the beginning I took up dance for my mother's sake.
Now I actually find a personality change with dancing,
it helps keep a cool mind, almost like meditation and
does me a lot of good physically too. We have a dance
teacher, Pandit Ravindra Athibuddhi, coming home on
weekends to teach us. Right now I am concentrating on
my career, so whenever there is a show and Mamma asks
me to dance, I dance. A lot depends on my film shooting
schedules." Hema's mothering does not stop
at dance, she is as involved in Esha's film career,
making sure she chooses good films, planning her shooting
schedules and even ensuring that the movies are released
Now it is young Ahana's turn at the hands of the makeup
artist. "I am a little nervous," she
pipes in, fidgeting in her chair. Is she also inclined
to act in films? "No, no" she loudly
asserts, "I am just not interested in joining
films." (Did we just hear Papa Dharmendra heave
a sigh of relief!)
Hema has had enough of my intrusion in the Green Room,
and quite firmly ushers me out before her daughters
can get more outspoken.
That's Hema Malini for you with her volatile and vibrant
young girls! A celebrity mother with a difference.