Renowned Gujarati stage actor, director Markand Bhatt passes away

Markand Bhatt
Markand Bhatt
Well-known Gujarati stage actor and theatre personality Markand Bhatt passed away here this morning.
He was 87. He is survived by a son and a daughter. His wife, the well-known Hindi film actress Urmila Bhatt, had pre-deceased him in February 22, 1997. One of their sons also died some time ago.
His funeral is scheduled for tomorrow morning, his son Suketu Bhatt told NetIndian.
Born in 1929 in Baroda, now Vadodara, Prof Bhatt obtained a Bachelor's degree in theatre arts from the Maharaja Sayajirao University of Baroda. 
He worked for some time as head of the Department of Drama at the Saurashtra Sangeet Natak Akademi in Rajkot, before joining and serving as the head of the Department of Theatre Arts at the Maharaja Sayajirao University . University from 1969 to 1989. He was Dean of the Faculty of Performing Arts at the University between 1984 and 1989. 
He served as Chairman of the Gujarat Sangeet Natak Akademi from 1992 to 1995.
Alongside his work in theatre education, Prof Bhatt pursued a career on the Gujarati stage and won wide acclaim as an outstanding actor and director.
His roles in plays such as C.C.Mehta’s Atrulupta Saraswati and Param Maheshwar, Tagore’s Nandini (Raktakarabi), Muktadhara, and Arup Ratan, Bhasa’s Karnabhar, Shankar Shesh’s Raktbeej, Raghuvir Chaudhari’s Sikandar Saani, and Girish Karnad’s Agni Ane Vaarsad won a special place in contemporary Gujarati theatre.
Some of his major productions as director were Dhara Gurjari, Shetal Ne Kanthe, Finger Print, and Hoholika.
Prof Bhatt was the recipient of many awards during a long and distinguished career. The Gujarat Sangeet Natak Akademi conferred its award on him in 1973, and in 1984, he was felicitated by the Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, London.
In 2008, he was honoured by the Sangeet Natak Akademi Award for his contribution to Indian theatre as an actor. 
His students remembered im as a person who led a very disciplined life and as someone who inspired them with his positive outlook.


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