Nightingales of India

Known as the 'Nightingales of India', Lata Mangeshkar and Asha Bhosle have forged Bollywood singing careers spanning more than six decades. The sisters are from a humble background that parallels the story of Bollywood and of India itself.

One or the other of them is rarely out of the record books as the most recorded artist in the world. The sisters were born into a theatrical family. Lata and the older of the two, talks about her childhood and career for the programme. She was left, at the age of 13, to support the whole family. After much hardship she got her big break and, just as the Hindi film industry was taking off at the end of the 1930s, a star was born. Now in her 80s, despite her fame and fortune, she leads a quiet, simple life and remains unmarried.

Her younger sister Asha, also in her 80s, was far from shy and retiring. Teenage elopement, affairs and divorce make her the dangerous half of the duo. She too made it to the top.
Everyone who is anyone in Bollywood has worked with or is familiar with the sisters' work.

Picture: Lata Mangeshkar (right) and her sister Asha Bhosle (left), Credit: Strdel/AFP/Getty Images

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55 minutes

Last on

Sun 13 Oct 2013 21:06 GMT

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