Whether it was setting the Mumbai Theater stages on fire, or whether it was winning millions of hearts on television, Jayati Bhatia has created history thru'out her career. Best known for her award winnning plays, her most memorable characters on television and her charming, bubbly persona, Jayati talks to our reporter from IF about her past and present experinces of being an actress.
Catch Jayati talking about the ever famous - Titli Mami, Mishti Bua, and much more:
Tell us about your career graph in telly screen? Take us thro this journey..
Jayati: Well, my journey began with Theatre Training in Delhi followed by a series of roles in Ekta Soaps from 1996. I did Itihaas, Kanyadaan at that point of time..Later I had 10 years of beautiful working with Balaji in serials like Kutumb, Kasauti Zindagi Ki, Kahaani Ghar Ghar Ki, etc. Then came Sachinji's Tu Tu Main Main, Jassi Jaisi Koi Nahi happened and then Sinndoor Tere Naam Ka and now Mamta…
What about your Theatre Work?
Jayati: Theater has been the nicest part of my life. I enjoyed playing Ba in 'Going Solo Part 1, Mahatma Vs Gandhi '. Gandhi My Father is now being made on this play. 'Vagina Monologue' is another noteworthy play. . Infact, on 14 th July this play completed its 150th show and it is really a memorable thing for us. I was also a part of Mahesh Pattani's play, 'Mad About Money'…
You are known to be a multi-talented actor.. But your role as Titli Mami in Sinndoor got very popular.. Can you talk us thro this role…
Jayati: Titli Mami was a very beautiful character, very close to my heart. The character developed so well in the 2 years.. Above all, the producers, writers and even the channel had given me a free hand to play the character as I wanted. I used to add in few social comments too so that the audience would like it more.. Maine kitne baar audience ki death karadi hai, as Titli Mami… (laughs)…
I still remember one incident when I was on a trip to Bangkok. I was staying at a hotel and the gentleman who owned the hotel came to me, hugged me and said, "Humari Titli Mami Aagayi". So this is one character I miss playing now..
How was it working in Sinndoor? Do u think the serial could have got an extension?
Jayati: Sinndoor was a very good looking serial, with great talent acting-wise. Every character was very well etched and there was a clear demarcation. We had completed the 2 year mark, and frankly speaking, there was so much to work on, in the plot even without the 'Generation Leap' that has become a norm these days… I would say that , if I have worked with a well cast serial after Jassi Jaisi Koi Nahi, then it would be Sinndoor Tere Naam Ka..If only Sinndoor was a prime time serial, then it would have really given better results..
Actually, at the time when Sinndoor was winding up, I was facing a bigger challenge and personal shock in my life. My mother was hospitalized in Kolkata and she needed me there for emotional support. So I had to take an off from the serial and I was not even around on the last day of the shoot..
Yes, very true, because we viewers knew that Sinndoor was winding up and were wanting to see more of Titli Mami in the last few episodes. But that was not the case..
Jayati: I understand. Though I wanted to be with my unit on those last days of shooting, I just could not be there. But this was a blessing in disguise, as I am sure I could not have controlled myself , on the last day of shoot, as I was so close to all who worked with me.. I miss the banter, the funny comments, arguments, the masti and fun that we all used to have on the sets..
How is it to be a part of Mamta now?
Jayati: Working in Mamta team is really nice.. Me and Narayani share a very close bond , so the scenes between us come out really well. Narayani is restrained while I am the flamboyant one.. So we strike a great chord of closeness..
Actually, Akansha who plays Meme in Mamta is so surprised at times, when she sees us having all fun, acting and sounding like total mad people on sets.. But the minute the camera rolls , we all get to business and get serious with our roles and acting. Akansha just cannot believe this smooth transition happening before her eyes.
How is it working with the new generation kids in Mamta?
Jayati: Its really nice to work with the two kids, Gagan and Akansha.. Both are really lovely. But, my love and heart lies with my kids – Dhruv, Antariksh, Vedika, Niharika…. (laughs). Titli mami was always with them thro' their ups and downs.. I really miss them all…
We now see you as Mishty Bua in Mamta? Do you see a similarity in Mishty and Titli?
Jayati: When I was offered this role in Mamta, my character name was Babbo Bua and I was to play a Punjabi lady. I was not kicked about it and I really did not want to play a Punjabi… But later things changed and when I was told that I was to be Mishty Bua, a Bengali, I was happy.. Its really nice to play Mishty, she is loving but not as forthright… I again put in more of Bengali words, which are very common. I also make it a point that I repeat few words in Hindi too… Actually, the producer applauded me the other day, saying, "You have brought in a new Zing to the serial"…
I have put in my own input to the appearance of Mishty Bua too. The flowers she wears , her dressing sense, the way she tweaks and curls her hair in front of her face, her big sindoor, the bindi have all been my own input to the character..
What made you opt for the role of Mishty bua?
Jayati: I chose to play Mishty for selfish reasons…(laughs). First of all, I was determined to find something on Zee again. Secondly, all know me as Jayati Bhatia a Punjabi. But only few know the fact that I am a Bengali by birthright. So it gives me immense pleasure to talk the language that I spoke first in my life…
Will we see Mishty Bua for long in Mamta?
Jayati: Yes, Mishty will be around for long. I was talking to the creatives few days back… Now that Mamta is back with Akshay, it is not that Mishty Bua is done with her role. Infact, Mishty is now a very integral part of Mamta's family. She is Mamta's confidante, the person who Mamta runs in for support and advise. Infact, Mishty was the major reason for Mamta getting back to Akshay's house. She is the one who gives timely advises to both Mamta and Krishna. Now that my daughter Meme has a love angle going with Krishna, Mishty is there to stay..
You are now seen in Viraasat? How do you think the story is shaping there?
Jayati: I am a very blessed actress. People have accepted me in different kind of roles. Playing Meera Lamba, I have got an excellent response from my fans.. Actually this is the only serial where both the mother as well as mother-in-law are justified. Meera Lamba is so very correct as a mother, at the same time, she is the best mother-in-law any bahu can dream to get…
How is it working with Viraasat team?
Jayati: Its been really nice working with Virasat team. The actors are brilliant, there is no youngster out there. All are seasoned, polished actors, who have been in the scene for long now. All are extremely focused…
Viraasat has been a serial where no character is seen in the frame doing nothing. All are really important characters and the story is wound around all. Infact, this is the only serial which went on for nearly 1 year with just 8 pivotal characters. It was very recently that Chavi and Ankur Nayyar joined the team.
How did the Viraasat team react to the channel change that happened few months back?
Jayati: The only thing that hurts me is that this serial went thro such anxious moments and has faced the rough always. We were moved from Star Plus to Star One and suffered in the hands of KBC. Even today, we actors work under duress and pressure, we do not know about the fate of this serial in future.We never know what this serial has in store for …
Now tell us about your classical dancing skills..
Jayati: I am a Classical Dancer, Odissi dance infact. I started dancing from the age of 6. I was working really hard on it till 2003. But then, with daily soaps, I do not get enough time for 'Riyaaz'. So as of now, I have discontinued dance. I believe in giving 100% to whatever I do. If I feel I cannot give so much to dance, then there is no point holding on to it. But I will resume my dance in another 3 years from now… Probably then, I will slow down a bit on soaps and concentrate on Dance.
Television and viewers will never want to lose Jayati Bhatia the Actress...
Jayati: No, don't worry.. I will then learn to utilize time at the fullest. Time management should help me…
Jayati clearly defines versitality. With such memoriable performances and with such a flamoyant personality, Jayati, a.k.a. Titli Mami is the number one on our list.
Reporter: Srividya Rajesh
Author: Hiral Anju Bhatt, Srividya Rajesh