Swatilekha Sengupta, RIP

June 17, 2021 12:14:47 PM IST
MTG editorial

Veteran Bengali stage and film actress Swatilekha Sengupta, passed away at a Kolkata hospital at the age of 71. She was a recipient of the Sangeet Natak Akademi Award in 2011, for her contribution to Indian theatre.

She and her husband Rudraprasad Sengupta, along with their daughter Sohini, ran Nandikar, one of Kolkata's best known theatre groups.

Born in 1950, Swatilelekha Chatterjee, started her career in theatre in Allahabad, going on to work with directors like A.C. Banerjee, B.V. Karanth, Tapas Sen, and later Rudraprasad Sengupta, whom she married.

According to Nandikar's website, Having done her Masters in English, Swatilekha Sengupta started working with Nandikar in 1977. A diploma holder in Music from Trinity College, London, Swatilekha was the backbone of the music team in Nandikar for decades. Playing violin and piano with equal felicity, she scored music for some finest theatre. As an actress she mesmerized in the roles of Greek Antigone or Iphigenia, Brechtian Grusha or Shen Te, Tarasankar's Suradhoni and Anuradha Banerjee in AJNATOBAAS. In the world of the celluloid, we know her as the female lead in Satyajit Ray's Ghare Baire. As a writer, she adapted/translated works of Munsi Premchand, Bhisham Sahni, Leela Majumder and also wrote theatre manuals for the young in Hindi, English and Bengali. She directed FOOTBALL in Hindi for M P Rangmandal, adapted-directed short plays like PAKHI, DULIA and TOMAR NAAM, derived from Leela Majumdar and others, which featured in Festivals in the USA, Sweden, Qatar, Oman and in Bharangam in Delhi. She established herself as a director with Nandikar's major success MADHABI, which received the Best Production Award in 2010 from the state theatre academy.

Swatilekha Sengupta, RIP.

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