Masala Podcast

Fargo/Never Have I Ever star Richa Moorjani on beauty & South Asian identity: S5, Ep 13

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Episode notes

Never Have I Ever & Fargo star Richa Moorjani is talking with me, Sangeeta Pillai, host of Masala Podcast!

I'm thrilled to share my conversation with the exceptionally talented Richa Moorjani. We talk about challenging beauty standards, about the importance of representation, about our dual identities as South Asian women living in the West – and so much more.

American actress Richa Moorjani hails from a South Asian family deeply rooted in music, her life filled with melodies and rhythms since her childhood. Her mother is a singer who lived in Mysore before migrating to the United States at the age of seven. A self-taught musical maestro, her father merged his love for music and community, creating bonds with fellow Indian immigrants. 

Together, they formed a band that celebrated their roots through the sounds of Hindi cover songs.

Richa’s upbringing in America sowed the seeds of a cultural blend that would later influence Richa's own artistic endeavours. 

But this episode isn’t all about music, TV and the arts. 

We’re going to get very serious, and make some impact on the cultural divides between Hollywood, and Bollywood.

We're going to confront a critical issue that hits close to home for many of us: the dominance of Western beauty standards and their profound impact on our South Asian cultural ideals. Women, in particular South Asian, really struggle with the Western beauty ideal of “skinny” that is at odds with our very genetics.

In sharing our personal stories, we’ll dissect the intense pressures to conform and the struggle for acceptance, all while highlighting the nuanced racism that we face and our collective yearning for true representation in the media.

You're in for a treat as we reminisce about the familial ties fostered on the beloved show "Never Have I Ever," where Richa brings life to the character of Kamala. She'll share the beauty of her real-life friendship with Poorna Jagannathan and the heartfelt connection shared with the diverse cast mates. 

Plus, we'll delve into the cultural impact of the show and Richa's exciting role as Indira in the hit series "Fargo."

I'm especially excited for what Richa has to share today – wisdom to her younger self and all the South Asian women out there about owning your light and seizing the endless possibilities. 

I'll shed some light on the transformations within our South Asian communities in the UK and the US, celebrating the progress and new paths that are emerging for South Asian women.

Join us as I take you through Richa's incredible story, from a child enamoured with classical dance to a shining presence in the acting world, underscoring the essential need for real representation and the empowering effect of stories that embrace our cultural intricacies.

So settle in as I, Sangeeta, lead you through a conversation filled with not just the challenges but the remarkable victories and advancements for South Asians in the media and beyond, all here on the Masala Podcast.