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Marathi month at NCPA

Nave Valan, an annual Marathi Film festival, and Kalpana Ek Avishkaar Anek, a Marathi theatre competition, to showcase the best of regional talent.

entertainment Updated: Oct 04, 2010 14:14 IST
Jayeeta Mazumder

Regional fare has come to notice all of a sudden after Oscar-nominated Harishchandrachi Factory garnered universal acclaim last year. NCPA’s Nave Valan, started only a year ago, is an annual Marathi film festival meant to bring together handpicked Marathi movies, out of niche festivals, onto a public platform in a more mainstream manner. This is also the aim of Kalpana Ek Avishkaar Anek, a Marathi theatre competition targeting young talent in the city.

Deepa Gahlot, head of programming, NCPA, says, “Marathi cinema was going through a resurgence last year with a lot of young filmmakers coming forward with amazing cinema. We decided to keep it going, bring them out of the festival circuit because they don’t get seen otherwise. We conducted a poll among film personalities and critics and shortlisted six out of 12 films, on the basis of the popularity of the actors, success of the film as well as the significance of the subject.”

Harishchandrachi FactoryThe films include Natrang, Jeta, Ringa Ringa, Mumbai Pune Mumbai, Lalbaug Parel and Jhing Chik Jhing. Gahlot adds that there’s a balance of genres, from love stories to the farmer suicide issue.

The theatre competition, too, is intended to sieve out original scripts underlining topical issues. Ravi Mishra, CEO, Astitva, and the event coordinator, says, “The competition started in the late 1970s, with names like the late Narayan Surve and Shriram Lagoo. But there was a gap of eight years in between where nobody took an initiative to revive it. I decide to take it up in 2004.”

He reminds that most city inter-college theatre competitions pick up after the month of August, initiated by St Xavier’s Malhar. “The theme is globalisation of the economy. A panel of dignitaries will select about five plays of forty minutes each. It’s an open competition, not just meant for students. Many who had won the competition in the past moved on to become legendary names in the theatre and film industry,” Mishra says.