Remember Kitu Gidwani? Here's what the Swabhimaan actress is up to
By Nikita Wagh
Born on October 22, 1967, in a Sindhi family in Mumbai, Kitu Gidwani's birth name is Kaushalya Gidwani. Her family migrated from Pakistan to India after the partition and lived in Worli's refugee camp. The actress, best remembered for her roles in Doordarshan's Junoon and Swabhimaan, studied in Fort Convent School. (All pictures/Kitu Gidwani's official Instagram account, AFP and mid-day archives)
During her graduation, Kitu took an active interest in French and even started acting in French and English plays. Though she made it big on television a few years later and also stepped into the film industry, Kitu's first love is still theatre.
As a child, Kitu Gidwani (as said by her in her old interviews) was a restless and hyper girl. She felt suppressed at times. And then acting came her way, and Kitu found the outlet to express herself. In picture: Kitu with her Swabhimaan co-star Ronit Roy.
Very few know that Kitu Gidwani has even acted in a French film titled Black. In picture: Little Gidy, as Kitu is lovingly called, with her mother. The actress posted this picture on Instagram on Mother's Day.
While today's generation may know Kitu Gidwani for her roles in Fashion, Dhobi Ghat, Jaane Tu Ya Jaane Na, Student Of The Year, Ok Jaanu, and the most recent one being the Netflix original Ghost Stories, she was a popular face on Indian television during her formative years, having been seen in memorable serials like Air Hostess, Swabhimaan and Junoon.
In 1984, Kitu Gidwani made her acting debut with Holi, the film that marked Aamir Khan's acting debut as well. However, it was Trishna (1985) that made Kitu popular.
People who have grown up watching Doordarshan still remember Kitu for her free-spirited and ambitious woman roles. In picture: Mukesh Khanna and Kitu Gidwani on the sets of Shaktimaan. The actress played Geeta Vishwas in the first few episodes.
It was no different on the film front as well. Kitu Gidwani has been part of films like Dance of the Wind (1997) and Earth (1998), films which won her accolades. Dance of the Wind was a co-production of five countries including UK, Germany and India, and Kitu's role of Pallavi won her the Best Actress award at the Festival of Three Continents in 1998.
Not many would know that Kitu Gidwani is a trained dancer too. "My history with dance is chequered. As a child, when I watched someone in my building do Bharatanatyam, I told my mother I wanted to learn it and did so for a few years. Later in life, I came across Padma Shri Dr. Ileana Citaristi, an Odissi and Chhau exponent, under whose guidance I learnt Chhau. I also joined Shiamak Davar's academy and in 1999, started doing serious Latin ballroom dancing with Sandip Soparrkar. Having learnt the Argentine tango for 12 years, it is a dance form I am a senior artiste in. And now, my love for Cuban and African music took me to a workshop by choreographer Namrata Wittke, who introduced me to African rumba," said Kitu.
Kitu Gidwani takes dance very seriously and does not like to do a haphazard job of it. "Dance is part of indigenous people around the world. Dance is a basic, primal part of human existence. It is a form of self-expression; something we are unfortunately moving away from. On the health parameters, it is good for the heart and also prevents degenerative brain diseases," said the actress, who carefully balances her shoot life with dancing.
In picture: Indian ballroom dancer and choreographer Sandip Soparrkar's birthday celebration attended by (L-R) Jesse Randhawa, Mandira Bedi, Armenian champion ballroom dancer Tao Porchon Lynch, Smiley Suri and Kitu Gidwani on October 8, 2010.
Kitu Gidwani is also a passionate animal activist. One glance at her Instagram page and you'll know how fond she is of animals.
In her career spanning over 30 years, she has been a prominent face in the TV industry as well as movies and theatre, and has now set foot in the digital space as well. She was last seen in Ghost Stories, where she played Druv's (Avinash Tiwary) mother.
Here's wishing a very happy birthday to Kitu!
About the Gallery
It's veteran actress Kitu Gidwani's birthday today. The actress, who ruled the Doordarshan era in the 80s and 90s, turns 53 this year and all we can say is that she is looking more stunning than ever. A look at her journey in photos