First of Many: Ashwini Kalsekar revisits Shanti


I was in touch with Sumukhi for the longest time. Then there was a little photoshoot that they had to do. So I went for this audition, and Parto Mitra, who I work with even now on television, wrote a few lines for me and asked me to say it on camera. I meet Amit Behl sometimes because his wife Vaibhavi is also a good friend. I also cross paths with Annup Sonii. So for me, the fear wasn’t of meeting people and getting intimidated. 2. Back then, I was a air hostess. Also, when you have good actors, it gets easier. Amitabh Bachchan is my God. So everything for me was new. To me, that monitor room would look like a bigger version of the cockpit. Written by Mimansa Shekhar
| New Delhi |

Published: May 6, 2020 9:27:07 am

Shanti premiered on DD National in 1994. But the hairstylist asking me about the required hairdo took me by surprise. Nothing inspired me as such. Someone told me in the beginning, “Ashwini, you are supposed to only react on somebody else’s performance.” That’s the only key. It is because of him that today I am where I am. And the funniest thing that they would say was “okay, we go from the top” and I would think that the camera is on top so now we have to act for the top (laughs). And I am not talking about my look or styling, but I would try and correct myself. So how did it all begin for her? So technically there wasn’t any memory problem. I had never seen a single shoot in my life. There wasn’t any nervousness because as cabin crew you deal with so many people every day, and there was no stage fear because I used to perform with Hema Malini all over the world. At 9 pm, I got a call from Shafi Inamdar’s brother who was the line producer for UTV. Also Read | First of Many: Gajraj Rao | Vivek Oberoi | Mohammed Zeeshan Ayyub | Rajpal Yadav | Rajeev Khandelwal | Govind Namdev | Neena Gupta | Pankaj Tripathi | Satish Kaushik | Mohit Raina | Shahid Kapoor | Anang Desai | Jimmy Sheirgill | Tabu | Harsh Chhaya | Gaurav Gera | Saurabh Shukla | Deepak Dobriyal | Seema Pahwa | Annup Sonii | Sayantani Ghosh | Annu Kapoor | Ajay Devgn | Vishal Malhotra | Rahul Khanna | Ashutosh Rana | Jaaved Jaaferi | Ashwath Bhatt | Varun Badola | Renuka Shahane | Taapsee Pannu | Manoj Bajpayee | Milind Soman | Rajkummar Rao | Akhilendra Mishra | Rohit Roy | Suchitra Pillai | Gulshan Grover | Abhay Deol 
6. Acting is about reacting. My mother still has that photograph laminated. I am not a trained actor. © IE Online Media Services Pvt Ltd

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First of Many I am not saying it was loud, but it was very theatrical. Everything! I am a classical dancer. I did that and came back home. It was many years ago. They were all big stars, but they were so helpful and accommodating. What do you remember of your first day on set? But here, there would be this man who would put blue and pink eye-shadows, so makeup wasn’t too fascinating on the first day. He asked me if I want to act, and I said my only condition was I can do it on Friday. 📣 The Indian Express is now on Telegram. How did the project come to you? We last met when I was driving back from Laxmmi Bomb shoot in Madh Island, and he was shooting for Crime Patrol on a jetty. Click here to join our channel (@indianexpress) and stay updated with the latest headlines
For all the latest Entertainment News, download Indian Express App. My one strength, which is still there, is I remember my lines. Here’s what Ashwini Kalsekar shared:
1. I said why not, but I am flying, and I can shoot only on Fridays because that used to be my weekly off. I don’t know where he is now, but God bless him. Then the director was there to tell you how natural or loud you can be. I knew what makeup was because of my classical dance background. I was surrounded by all these big actors – Amar Talwar, Yatin Karyekar, Sumukhi Pendse, Sukanya Kulkarni, and Mandira Bedi. We did rehearsals. This is also because there are tukdas in Kathak which you have to recite while performing. One film or role that inspired you to become an actor? How many retakes did you take? What was your first acting project? Honestly, I don’t remember. She has played memorable roles in movies like Simmba, Golmaal, Phoonk, Johnny Gaddar and Khakee. After instructing us, the director would be in the monitor room. It was a daily soap called Shanti. I am not from theater. A popular name on Indian television too, Kalsekar has also been part of shows like CID, Aahat, Kasamh Se, Jhansi Ki Rani, Jodha Akbar and Kavach. 3. He said never mind. And then there was online editing happening. But I am a Bollywood buff. If I am not mistaken, I was a part of its episode number 269, and my character’s name was Sasha. I never thought of acting or anything. However, I think according to that time (1995), the performance that we did was okay. I didn’t know anything about these terms. During a flight, he asked me would you like to act. Fortunately, I didn’t fumble on my first day, and my take was good. (Express archive photo)
Ashwini Kalsekar is a regular face in Rohit Shetty and Ram Gopal Varma’s films. There was a gentleman called Kabir Bhatia. What I remember was this multi-camera setup. And then it all started. There were a lot of Marathi actors too, and since I am a Marathi, their presence was comforting. Were you nervous? 4. The actor, who has stayed active for the past 25 years on both big and small screen, stumbled into acting by chance. If given a chance to go back to your debut role, what would you like to change or do better? My other favourite actors are Rekha ji and Dilip Kumar. How was the rapport with your co-stars when you got to meet or work with them again later? 5.