Model and actress Lisa Ray is making her comeback on television with TLC’s jewellery show called Oh My Gold. As expected, it’s a sort of everything-you-wanted-to-know-about-gold and other precious stones kind of show: how and what to buy, wear, and above all enjoy, when it comes to jewellery.
In the five-part series Lisa travels to Jaipur, Hyderabad, Delhi, Kochi and Chennai to uncover the jewellery styles of these cities. Viewers also get a quick lesson in the art of jewellery making as she delves into India’s extravagant jewellery traditions that are still practised today.
Oh My Gold starts on July 10 at 9 pm on TLC.
What attracted you to this television show?
Why not? It’s an extraordinary combination of things. I had never heard of a jewellery show so I thought it would be different. I always wanted to do a travel show and in this show I get to explore exotic Indian jewellery and travel around the country.
Do you like jewellery?
My mom is Polish but she loved jewellery. My dad is a Bengali and I spent a lot of time in Kolkata. I prefer subtle jewellery and diamonds but now I have fallen in love with pearls and emeralds. I definitely love jewellery — being a woman and half Indian, it comes naturally to me.
The show helped me indulge my natural curiosity. It’s just fascinating that married women in India don’t step out of their homes without some ornament. There is no other place in the world where women have the same relationship with jewellery as in India.
How was your experience shooting for the show?
It was an amazing and surprise-packed experience. I have discovered many aspects of Indian culture and people’s fascination for jewellery while doing the show. Besides wearing beautiful gold jewellery, I got to wear a gold sari and got a gold facial. I just felt like a golden girl while I was shooting this show. It was hard work, sometimes long days of shooting to get all the material, but it was fun.
Who has designed your costume in the show?
It’s just me with the casual look and minimal make-up. My costume is designed by a combination of designers.
Of the five places you have visited, which has been your favourite and why?
I liked all of them but Kochi is memorable because of the backwaters and the boat houses.
Recently you did a play with Kabir Bedi.
Yes, I did one play with Kabir Bedi in Toronto and went to the India International Film Awards (IIFA). It has been hectic lately and I loved IIFA. It was the union of two worlds and India does have an international impact. The films that are being made today have a global perspective.
After your illness, has your perspective on life changed?
Yes. I am excited to re-engage with life. Now I value people and relationships even more. I am grateful to have fought the illness and still be alive. There are many lessons that I learnt during that phase of my life. I call myself a cancer graduate. Now I am more prepared than before and very enthusiastic about life.
I still struggle with my health. I have made some healthy lifestyle changes. I do yoga which helps me de-stress and get enough sleep. I also eat well. I am working on opening a yoga studio in Canada and also writing a book on cancer awareness.
Any plans of coming back to films?
There are interesting projects lined up but I cannot give the details at the moment.