Amala Shankar (Bengali: অমলা শংকর; née Nandy, 27 June 1919 – 24 July 2020)was an Indian danseuse. She was the widow of dancer and choreographer Uday Shankar and mother of musician Ananda Shankar and actress Mamata Shankar and sister-in-law of musician and composer Ravi Shankar. Amala Shankar acted in the film Kalpana written, co-produced and directed by husband Uday Shankar. She died on Friday, July 24, 2020 in West Bengal’s Kolkata, India. She was 101 years old
27 June 1919
|24 July 2020 (aged 101)
|Ananda Shankar, Mamata Shankar
|Akshay Kumar Nandy (father)
Amala Shankar acted in the film Kalpana (1948). The film was written, co-produced and directed by Uday Shankar, who also appeared in the film. Amala played the character of Uma. Amala Shankar attended the 2012 Cannes Film Festival where the film was screened. Amala Shankar said in an interview– “2012 Cannes Film Festival… I was the youngest film star at the Cannes Film Festival… I am revisiting Cannes after a span of 81 years…”
In 1939 when she was staying in Chennai with Uday Shankar’s dance group, one day came to Amala at night and gave her a marriage proposal. Uday Shankar married Amala in 1942. Their first son Ananda Shankar was born in December 1942. Their daughter Mamata Shankar was born in January 1955. Uday Shankar and Amala Shankar was a popular dance couple for a long time. But, later Uday Shankar was romantically involved with a young girl of his troupe and he produced Chandalika without Amala. Uday Shankar died in 1977. In the last few years, the couple lived separately. As of 2012 Amala Shankar was still active and has kept Shankar Gharana alive with her daughter Mamata and daughter-in-law Tanushree Shankar. She was the sister-in-law of Ravi Shankar, who was a Sitarist.