Makdee star Shweta Basu Prasad makes documentary about classical music
Actor Shweta Basu Prasad’s documentary, Roots, will premiere on February 10 at the Hindustan Times Kala Ghoda Arts Festival.Updated: Feb 24, 2017 11:40 IST
She grew up in a family that appreciates arts, including cinema, poetry, literature and music. Hence, the Makdee (2002) actor, Shweta Basu Prasad got exposed to classical music “quite early” in her life. She learnt Kathak and then the sitar too.
“However, I didn’t have enough friends, who were interested in classical music. They thought it’s not ‘cool’, and I realised it was due to their lack of exposure to such music,” says Shweta. A few years later, when the actor was graduating in mass media and journalism, she decided to make a documentary in a Q&A format about classical music. “It was mostly for my own understanding as to why there is a slow death [of classical music] in our country, especially amongst youth,” she says.
From then on, it took Shweta over four years to research, ideate, create a team, do interviews, edit and finish the project called Roots. For the same, she interviewed several bigwigs, such as AR Rahman, Vishal Bhardwaj, Gulzar, Pt Shivkumar Sharma, Pt Jasraj, Pt Hariprasad Chaurasia, Pt Birju Maharaj, Imtiaz Ali, Ustad Amjad Ali Khan, Dr L Subramaniam and many others.
“I consider this project a blessing and a great journey, but it was challenging. At the start, I was doing everything myself and even funded the project from whatever savings I had from a few regional language movies from South India that I had done. Also, it’s not about a particular person, event or a subject but a 5,000 year old tradition and its status today,” she says.
Ask Shweta, if after acting and making a documentary, direction is the next thing on her mind, and she says, “My first love is acting but I also enjoy producing. I didn’t look at Roots as any kind of preparation for [getting into] direction but as they say ‘never say never’. However, I would love to make a couple of documentaries in the future,” says Shweta, who will be seen in the Varun Dhawan-Alia Bhat starrer, Badrinath Ki Dulhania.