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Until a few years ago most of did not know Edwina Violette (or Edu, as her fans call her) by name. We only knew her as a background dancer in many Hindi songs. Famously, in the song ‘O Hasina Zulfonwali Jane Jahan’ from Teesri Manzil (1966) she appears in the beginning shaking her head and flaunting her long hair, before settling down on the letter C of the giant ROCKY sign. Thanks to the efforts of famous blogger Greta Kaemmer (of her blog memsaabstory), the world ‘discovered’ her. One of us (SS) was so thrilled that he wrote his first book on Hindi films, Edu’s biography.
In preparation for the book, SS watched more than one hundred videos of her (put together by Tom Daniel), he was struck by the other faces in the background who danced in many of these songs. It occurred to him that a book should be written about them while we can still identify them.
So, SS requested his friend Narsingh D Agnish to watch all the videos and capture still images of her co-dancers. He painstakingly captured almost 1,000 images, of which about 500 were selected to be sent to Edu by email. She responded promptly identifying most of them and writing little notes about them in the bargain!
We have selected about 300 of those images for this book. We are thrilled that we have been able to put names to so many faces of her co-dancers.
All three of us loved working on this book, we hope you will enjoy it too and have the excitement of saying, “I know her, she is Pamela, Edu’s best friend. Or, I recognize him, he is Terence, Edu’s brother!”