She may be relatively new to the world of acting in Urdu plays, but Sanam Baloch already has some major hits behind her.
The past year has been quite a year for Sanam Baloch, but the feisty young star seems coy, nay almost embarrassed, when I meet her and express my admiration at her quick climb to success. Baloch came under the glitzy limelight with HUM TV’s ‘Chaudween Ka Chand’, aired last Ramazan, wooing audiences with her dimpled smile and innocent face. After that it won’t be amiss to say it became Sanam’s year, as she delivered one hit after another. “I joke around on the sets that I have delivered a hat trick of hits – ‘Chaudween Ka Chand’, ‘Doraha’ and now ‘Noorpur Ki Raani’” she laughs.
But, for Baloch all this attention and popularity is nothing new, for she had “tasted fame” when she endeared herself to audiences as a host for the Sindhi channel, KTN, at the start of her career, soon after completing Matric. Her natural and spunky demeanour made her an instant star in Sindhi speaking areas, and such was the extent of her popularity that at a stage show of 70-80 thousand people in Larkana, she was showered with rose petals when she entered the venue, and people clamoured over one another to just get a glimpse of her. Although Baloch is modest about her instant popularity as an actor, she is less reserved when talking about the person who saw in her the talent we have come to appreciate,and was instrumental in introducing her to acting – Fahad Mustafa (Sunny Tunio).“I give credit to Sunny for discovering the actor in me. Today, if I am an actor, it is because of him”, Baloch says warmly.
Baloch met Sunny Tunio on the sets of one of her talk shows. Later, when he was doing the play ‘Kalaq’ and needed a female actor, he approached her. Baloch’s initial reaction was an instant no - although her sister, Sabreen Heesbani, was already an actor - because she thought she couldn’t act. But upon Tunio’s insistence, she conceded reluctantly. Not surprisingly, the play turned out to be a hit. She says in wonderment “Never in my wildest dreams could I have imagined that the play would be such a huge success. The play was aired at night, and in the morning I started getting calls from people congratulating me on my performance! In this day and age when there are so many channels this is truly remarkable.”
After this hit debut, Baloch took a sabbatical for two years. Says she “I wasn’t very mature when I launched my career in acting, but in these two years I grew as a person. Now, I know what sort of roles I want to do; what to look for in a director, and more importantly, that the script is vital in a play’s success.”
Consequently, Baloch got into the practice of saying “no”, and not accepting all the offers that came her way. Although she appreciates that she has been lucky enough to be offered so many roles in the first place, she is determined to maintain a certain standard, and accepts only lead roles. It is rare to find such confidence and focus in a newcomer. “My sister says I get things ready-made on a platter, and indeed, it’s humbling to have options at this age. New people have difficulties enough getting work, but I have been lucky that I have actually selected what I want to do” elucidates Baloch.
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