Friday, November 2, 2007

Charudatta Aaphale: Shaping e-wings to Kirtan

(The following report is actually a story made by me for The Hitavada. It appeared in the cityline issue of this newspaper and the original story can be read by Clicking here. The report is written on the occasion of Rashtriya Kirtan Festival .held in Nagpur from 28th October to 3 November.)
Rashtriya Kirtan Festival .in Nagpur is receiving remarkable response from youth. But can you imagine a Kirtankar as a youth icon? One who delivers lengthy lectures on implausible Purana that can attract the Gen X like never before? Making this possible is revolutionary. But not for Charudatta Aaphale, a man committed to making revolutions.

Charudatta’s dedication to Rashtriya Kirtan made him the global ambassador of this unique art. Charudatta, better known as Aaphale Guruji among youths, has large number of followers all over the globe. Besides his popular fan club on youth’s heartbeat website Orkut, two other e-fan clubs on international-level are dedicated to him. All these fan clubs are moderated by the youths and almost all members of these fan clubs are from young intellectual brigade of World Wide Web. Moreover, Aaphale is probably the only Kirtankar whose Kirtans are available on You tubeand Google video. One can easily view and download the clippings from his famous kirtans after a simple web search. Marathi Mandal of Australia dedicated a special webpage to him as well as a group of NRIs from USA run another e-fans club of the kirtan icon. What qualities have drawn together a universal prop up for the man? Charudatta is representative of generation next of Rashtriya Kirtan. The art of kirtan is an ancestral gift to him as his father, Govindswami Aaphale was the pioneer of Rashtriya Kirtan. Charudatta is trained under the legendary kirtankars Dholebuwa, Ghagbuwa and Sundarbuwa Marathe. During the last 20 years of his kirtan career, Charudatta has been traveling all over the country as well as abroad and has conducted over 4,500 kirtan programmes. Most renowned cassettes industries like ‘Venus’, ‘Alurkar’, ‘Zapata’ and ‘Varadhast’ have produced numerous cassettes and CDs of Charudatta, religious as well as dedicated to martyrs of Indian freedom struggle. His kirtan on Swatantryaveer Savarkar is most famous as it is full of positive aggression and groundbreaking thoughts. It’s available on You Tube as one of his disciples from USA, Guruprasad uploaded it for all. Charudatta’s attachment with youth also reveals through his work from the development of kirtan as an art. He imparts training to the students of kirtan through Kirtan-kul. Kirtan is known as blending of all 64 arts mentioned in Indian culture. Charudatta also excels in many arts among these. Besides performing kirtans, Aaphale is one of the best actors on Marathi stage. His forte is musical dramas and his excellent acting skills enabled him to enact most of the pivotal characters in Indian mythology. King Dushyant, Devarshi Narad, Saint Chokhamela, Lord Shrikrishna plus many other contemporary characters like Gangadharbuwa, Nilobarai and Khansaheb. For his outstanding performances, he has been proud recipient of Akhil Bharatiya Natya Parishad Award for consecutive three years. In a documentary on Rajarshi Shahu Maharaj, Charudatta played a key-role of legend of Marathi musical stage, Balgandharva. In a National Award winning documentary on Balgandharva, he played the real life male individual as well as the female characters portrayed by Balgandharva. He also portrayed Saint Gyaneshwar in a documentary on Saint Namdeo. On the occasion of birth centenary of another illustrious singer, actor Master Deenanath - Charudatta staged the late actor’s epic play ‘Ranadundubhi’ in which he portrayed the lead female character. Charudatta is a talented student and analyst of the Natya Sangeet and Indian Classical music. Through his stage shows and television appearances, his singing talent is well admired. Besides all this, his poetry singing has also gained tremendous popularity. His famous “Jay Mrityunjay” on the life of Swatantryaveer Savarkar comprised 40 songs composed and sung by him and has completed 50 shows till date. Through his Kirtans, Aaphale Guruji conveyed the message for all-round development of nation. His views are vivid, words are straightforward and intention is a strong youth. About 40-year old Kirtankar wishes for a strong, independent and confident youth, all set to fly high with firm bonding with the cultural and religious foundation of India. Today’s youth is inspired by his overall appearance and his devotion to the empowerment of the nation. That is why he is globally acclaimed and become the first ever e-kirtankar of India. Through his e-appearances, Aaphale Guruji is shaping the global wings for the divine eagle of Rashtriya Kirtan. So, if you missed his today’s Kirtan from the Mahotsava, don’t be upset. Just log on to ‘You Tube’ and hit the search-box for today’s Kirtan.

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