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Inspiring story of Sabira Merchant

Updated: Jan 19

Here’s the inspiring story of a self-made entrepreneur who makes every homemaker realize that a career can be restarted and reach the zenith even after marriage if the right efforts are put in.

Sabira Merchant - Actor - Story - Famehall
Sabira Merchant

Formal Education and Career

Sabira Merchant was born in Bombay (now Mumbai) on the 4th of August 1942 as the 5th child to Goolshen and AbdulHussein M.Thariani. In her mid-teens, she was sent to one of the finest finishing schools located in Switzerland. At the age of 17, she got married to the love of her life, Chotu Merchant. By the time she was 21, she was a lovely mother to three kids. At this point, the feeling of missing something was felt by this elegant and spirited homemaker from the suburbs of Mumbai. The days she spent at that finishing school in Switzerland and the memorable experiences of performing on stage stayed with her constantly. Finally, it prompted her to express the desire and passion to act on stage.

In the 1960s, Sabira's entry into the circle of Mumbai's performing arts became a trendsetting example. This incredible lady's rise to fame was a noteworthy one that included equal parts of displaying her charming confidence, radiating beauty along with breathtaking intelligence. Debuting as a "School girl" in the stage play "The Word" towards her popular role "Blanche Dubois" in the iconic play "A Street Car Named Desire" it was no looking back to this gifted performer. Sabira's acting talent was further recognized when she won the 1981 award for her stellar performance from the All India Critics Association.

Her shining and successful career in acting presented her with an opportunity to a live telecast program "An Evening at All India Radio". Her popularity was growing day by day as she was on air for consecutive nights. To add a feather to her cap, she took the role of quiz master for the show "What's the Good Word" on Doordarshan. The nightlife of Mumbai was redefined by Sabira is just an understatement. In the '80s, she brought the amusement of disco into the partygoers’ lives with her distinct nightclub Studio-29.

A Brief about her Corporate and Personal Finesse Training

Going into the '90s, her professional career sees a drastic uplift. Etiquette and diction training became her new focus where she utilized all those knowledge of elegance with people presentation skills. The Femina Miss India's global platform hugely benefitted from her onboard. Sabira trained the international crown-winning Indian beauties Priyanka Chopra, Diana Hayden, Yukta Mookhey and Lara Dutta.

There was always a sense of clarity and conviction in how Sabira proved her uniqueness. The corporate world invited her to share the art of communication and developmental skills. She, once again, delivered those programs with impeccable results and leading her to offer special classes and workshops.

Overcoming Challenges and Failures

The most challenging aspect of teaching English is having students with varied understanding capabilities. In those cases, Sabira uses her wisdom gained from teaching English all these years into creating a training plan that works well for the student. Also, she has come up with a timeless training manual to help all her students to attain their goals.

Source of Inspiration

To Sabira Merchant, all her students are a great inspiration. She learns a lot from everyone and devises her strategy accordingly so that she could help students in a more effective way. Also, she is a great fan of Oprah Winfrey and considers her an inspiration. Sabira also recommends her shows to everyone who wants to speak English fluently.

Advice to Young Entrepreneurs

Sabira Merchant gives valuable advice to every entrepreneur and individual out there in the world struggling to prove themselves: Learn how to speak well; present yourself in an engaging manner; Feel like you own the room and do what you must do in order to prove yourself.


With the help of Jaico publishing house and Mitali Parekh's collaborative writing, the book "A Full Life" by Sabira Merchant was released to the public. It shines the light on the world of acting to perfection to various colourful accomplishments in the entertainment industry by Sabira Merchant as a self-made individual. As a corporate and personal finesse trainer, she loves helping her students to communicate well and stand out in the crowd.

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