The Dinanath Mangueshkar Kala Mandir at the Kala Academy will witness performance of the 2,100th show of the popular Marathi historical drama, ‘Raigadala Jevha Jaag Yete’ (When Raigad Awakes) on April 19; an impressive achievement for a drama written in the early 1960s and on the verge of completing its golden jubilee.
The noted actor/ producer/ director, Avinash Deshmukh who revived the drama in the mid-1980s has been playing the central character of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj since then, though the rest of the cast including eminent actor, Mohan Joshi has undergone change.
Addressing a press conference in the city along with his daughter, Rujuta Deshmukh who enacts the role of Yesubai (wife of Chhatrapati Sambhaji Maharaj), Mr Deshmukh said that after he revived the drama some two-and-a-half decades ago, it went on to complete 1,200 shows. “Then the play started faltering, and we had to approach the playwright, Prof Vasant Kanetkar to rearrange the script and convert the three acts of the play into two acts, and restrict the same to 130 minutes duration,” he added.
“The play is an intelligent piece of work; it is less of a historical drama and more of a social comment on the relationship between one of the most famous father and son pairs,” Mr Deshmukh observed, noting that ‘Raigadala Jevha Jaag Yete’ is a humane tale, with no place for weapons like swords or spears. He also informed that presently the role of Chhatrapati Sambhaji Maharaj is enacted by his own son, Chaitanya Deshmukh, while his daughter, Rujuta is playing the character of Yesubai.
The play has music by Anand Modak, while Ravindra Sathe has sung a song for the stage production. Stating that he presently holds the rights for two of Prof Kanetkar’s plays – ‘Raigadala Jevha Jaag Yete’ and ‘Ethe Oshalala Mrityu’, Mr Deshmukh said that he has already lodged a complaint with the Goa police, to stop future shows of these two plays by any other person or company in Goa.
Rujuta, who shot to fame due to actor Sachin’s reality dance show – ‘Ekapeksha Ek’, followed by the popular Marathi soap opera, ‘Kalat Naklat’, was in the past linked to ‘Raigadala Jevha Jaag Yete’, when she enacted the role of Rajaram as a child actress.
Interacting with the media, Rujuta said that after the end of the tele-serial, ‘Kalat Naklat’, she decided to act in the play as she had no interesting offers, either in television serials or films. “However, I am also involved in a dance reality show – ‘Maharashtrache Nach Baliye’ with Madhura Velankar, Bhargavi Chirmule, Sharvari Jeminis and others, and also participate in dance performances,” she added. The petite actress, who is also a singer, further observed that the advantage of drama over tele-serials is that the former receives instant reaction from the audiences, while a performer has to wait for two to three weeks to get reactions for his or her performance in the latter, when the episodes of the serial get telecast.
-Navhind Times, Goa Daily