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Me Vasantrao trailer: A fiery and mercurial Vasantrao Deshpande finds his voice

Directed by Nipun Dharmadhikari, the biographical film is set to be released in theatres on 1 April.

Shriram Iyengar

A singer as fiery and mercurial as his voice was entrancing, Pandit Vasantrao Deshpande left a deep mark on Marathi musical theatre and Hindustani classical music.

Nipun Dharmadhikari's film Me Vasantrao seeks to capture a glimpse of this adventurous life with the singer's grandson essaying the title role.

Produced by Chandrashekhar Gokhale, Darshan Desai and Niranjan Kirloskar, the film is scheduled to be released in theatres on 1 April 2022.

The key to the trailer lies in the stubborn will of the late singer. From the first cut, it establishes his anti-establishment style and form. His effort to bring Marathi theatre's semi-classical form into the annals of Hindustani classical finds opposition from the orthodoxy. They call the attempt 'cheap'.

Dharmadhikari mirrors this with the singer's mother fighting orthodoxy in her own way through her atheism and independence. These seep into Vasantrao (Rahul Deshpande), whose early singing talent is accompanied by a chip on the shoulder.

Along the way he finds various influences that shape his craft. Key among them is Pandit Deenanath Mangeshkar (Amey Wagh), whose style of musical stage performances left the deepest imprint on Vasantrao. Yet, as Mangeshkar remarks, 'art often remains hidden till a connoisseur arrives'. This role is taken on by the great writer PL Deshpande (Pushkaraj Chirputkar).

Through it all, the trailer captures the essence of Vasantrao Deshpande's greatest challenge — overcoming himself. The singer did not truly achieve success until his forties. The failures, the taunts and the economic difficulties left him often cynical and defeated. The trailer ends with an ageing but victorious Deshpande taking in the applause as he performs on stage.

The trailer is a dramatic portrait of one of the more entertaining personalities in the world of classical music and theatre. While his talent for singing was renowned, Pt Vasantrao Deshpande's acumen to understand and bridge the semi-classical form of Marathi stage music with the aesthetics of Hindustani classical was to be his greatest legacy.

Rahul Deshpande takes up the role with elan. His singing ability adds to the bristling personality of his grandfather on screen. The trailer also brings forth the talented ensemble cast that includes Sarang Sathaye, Amey Wagh, Pushkaraj Chirputkar and Anita Date-Kelkar.

Watch the trailer below and let us know if you are keen to watch Me Vasantrao.

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