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Financial stability of theatres first priority: Prasad Kambli

Wednesday, April 11, 2018
By Raju Vernekar

Prasad Macchindra Kambli was elected President of the Akhil Bhartiya Marathi Natya Parishad (ABMNP), for the period 2018 to 2023, in a recent keenly-contested elections. Dr. Girish Oak and Naresh Gadekar were elected as Vice Presidents. Jagannath Chitale was elected as the treasurer, while Shard Ponkshe became the secretary.

In the election held all over the state 13,568 voters, including 2,823 voters from Mumbai had voting rights. The voting was held in 27 booths, including the booths in Belgaum and seven booths in Mumbai. Prasad Kambli trounced Dr Amol Kolhe of Mohan Joshi panel.

Ashok Dhere, Sunil Dhage, Madhura Velankar, Shankar Rege, Bharat Jadhav, Avinash Narkar, Shekhar Bendre, Rajan Bhise, Mangesh Kadam are some of the other important members of the new team. Mohan Joshi’s panel was also in the reckoning, but it was the ‘Aplya Panel’ of Kambli that finally won the prestigious elections.

Speaking to 'The Afternoon D & C', Kambli said that to make the Parishad financially stronger is his first agenda. This can be done only if the income from the sale of the tickets from plays is increased. At present the Parishad depends upon aid given by the state government. Once financial stability is achieved, then several measures for the welfare of the artists will be implemented, he added.  

All the 60 members of the Parishad will be requested to actively participate in the work so that a cohesive picture emerges. Besides, a study will be made to make the plays and dramas financially viable for the benefit of the members. At present our plays like 'Sangeet Devbabhali' are doing very well. Similarly 'Sangeet Vastraharan' has still retained the charm”.

ABMNP is a Marathi theatre body which organises Akhil Bharatiya Marathi Natya Sammelan every year. ABMNP  was founded in 1905 by Anant Waman Barve with the help of Babajirao Rane of 'Rajapurkar Natak Mandali' and Mujumdar, Manager of Kirloskar Natak Mandali. At that time in the erstwhile Bombay state there were many drama companies performing Marathi dramas. Barve was a playwright and wrote a number of dramas performed by different drama companies. He floated the idea of having a central body for Marathi theatre to bring together these drama companies on a common platform to solve its problems.

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