Celebrated danseuse and choreographer, star of dance drama Kalpana, Amala Shankar passes away at 101
Noted danseuse Amala Shankar has passed away in her sleep; her granddaughter, the actor Sreenanda Shankar has confirmed the news on Twitter. Shankar was 101. Shankar had a prolific career in non-classical fusion dance and has performed across the globe with her late husband Uday Shankar who is often referred to as the 'founder of modern dance in India.' Amala Shankar was also the sister-in-law of the late Sitar maestro Ravi Shankar and is survived by her daughter Mamata Shankar, her daughter-in-law Tanushree Shankar, and her grandchildren.
"Today my Thamma left us at the age of 101. We just celebrated her birthday last month. Feeling so restless that there is no flight from Mumbai to Kolkata. Heartbroken Broken heart May her soul Rest in peace. This is an end of an era. Love you Thamma. Thank you everything," Sreenanda wrote on Twitter.
Amala and Uday Shankar had been crucial in modernising Indian dance, especially as they explored non-classical genres of dance by introducing European and folk elements into their choreography, and found particular acclaim for their ballets conceived on Hindu themes. Amala Shankar had also starred in the seminal 1948 dance drama Kalpana, which was also screened at the Cannes Film Festival in 2012.