One of the most popular Kannada soaps – Radha Kalyana, is set to return in an all new avatar on Zee Kannada. The expectations are already high due to its past record of running for over three years, the new cast and crew are hoping to repeat success. Actress Radhika Rao, who plays the lead character as ‘Radha’ is excited for the great opportunity following a satisfying career as an artiste so far on the small and big screen. The Mangaluru Hudugi Hubballi Huduga fame actress who started off with Tulu films is a trained classical dancer. Apart from small screen, she has even bagged a couple of exciting movies in Kannada, one titled as Lungi and another starring Srujan Lokesh in Yellidde Ilitanaka. She speaks to Bengaluru Chronicle about her love for dance, Yakshagana, soaps, films and more.
“To be honest, I never aspired to become an actress. I love dance, and not to exaggerate but I can even sacrifice my life for dance. Such is the love and passion for dance. I practice ‘Bharathanatyam’ to stay close to dance. Though my native is Mangaluru, I am born and brought up in Bengaluru. It was during my pre-university days, I kept getting offers in both television and film, to which I initially showed no interests. However, things changed when I to went pursue my graduation in Mangaluru,” says Radhika Rao.
She goes on to add that it was her mother who insisted that she took up acting following an offer in a Tulu film. “I was in a situation where I had to take it up. I even told my mother that she will be responsible if anything went wrong. Now, strangely acting has become an addiction to me. I cannot think anything beyond it,” she smiles.
Following her Tulu films, she bagged her first tele-serial Mangaluru Hudugi Hubballi Huduga, which earned her great recognition, further leading to another soap Maharani, which recently came to an abrupt end. In between, she even did a Tamil serial for over 100 episodes.
“With referance to Radha Kalyana, I am excited as well as curious to know the audiences’ response once it hits the screen. Apart from the title and the names of the two lead characters - Radha and Krishna, everything else is brand new. I play a dancer, who is a follower of lord Rama and his principles, and someone who dislikes flirts. However, the tale revolves around the two opposite characters,” she explains.
About her movies, she shares that after a few Tulu films, she signed a couple of Kannada projects. “ I have already completed the shoot for Lungi, with the cast and crew hailing from Mangaluru. I am currently working in Yellidde Ilitanaka starring Srujan Lokesh and Hariprriya. I play a support role in it,” she adds.
This multi-faceted artiste shares that her love for drawing and Yakshagana which keeps her occupied when she is not busy shooting. “It was my uncle who insisted that I learn Yakshagana. In fact, I disliked it so much that I would fall asleep watching the art. It is rare for a woman to learn and perform the art form. However, when I started practising, I got hooked onto it. I have performed Yakshagana along with my uncle on several occasions on the stage,” she concludes....