"My all time favourite is one and only Vyjayanthimala. I really admire her and have always tried to follow her footsteps. She is over 70 but is still perfect and dances so well. She is a great inspiration for me," Hema Malini told reporters here Thursday.
She was addressing a press conference ahead of Jaya Smriti, an annual dance festival dedicated to her mother.
This year the festival will celebrate women's power. It started Nov 16, but was discontinued following the death of veteran filmmaker Yash Chopra.
Now the remaining performances will take place on Dec 26 and Dec 27. Hema, who will perform dance ballet Mahalakshmi and Durga during the festival, feels girls should continue to dance even after marriage.
"Esha performed with me two months back. My son-in-law is great. He sends her here to practice with me. She can continue dancing as long as she wants to. I would be more than happy to welcome her," Hema told IANS.
"Yes, it's true many people don't make effort to perform after marriage. But time has changed and many husbands encourage their wives to dance and it's lovely to see the change."
A trained Bharatanatyam dancer, she rues audiences consider Bollywood dance as dance.
"Cultural dances have not faded. There are many institutions that are running full. But I feel people think only Bollywood dance is dance. In movies classical dance has completely disappeared. It also depends on the kind of films. There are films like 'Devdas (1955)' where Madhuri Dixit did beautiful classical dances," she added.