Sulabha Deshpande (Marathi: सुलभा देशपांडे; 1937 – 4 June 2016) was an Indian actress and theatre director. Apart from Marathi theatre and Hindi theatre in Mumbai, she acted in over 73 mainstream Bollywood films. She also performed in art house cinema such as Bhumika (1977), Arvind Desai Ki Ajeeb Dastaan (1978), and Gaman (1978) as a character actor, along with numerous TV series and plays. A leading figure in experimental theatre movement of the 1960s, she was associated with Rangayan, and personalities like Vijay Tendulkar, Vijaya Mehta, and Satyadev Dubey. In 1971, she co-founded the theatre group Awishkar with her husband Arvind Deshpande, and also started its children's wing, Chandrashala, which continues to perform professional children theatre. In later years, she acted in serials such as Jee Ley Zara, Ek Packet Umeed, Asmita and in films such as English Vinglish.
|Died||4 June 2016 (aged 78–79)|
She was born and brought up in Mumbai, where she studied at Siddhartha College in Fort, Mumbai, and later received a degree in education.
Deshpande started her career as a teacher at Chhabildas Boys' High School in Dadar, Mumbai. While working there she asked noted playwright, Vijay Tendulkar to write a few plays for her students. This started her association with theatre, and in time made her one of the pioneers in experimental theatre movement of the 1960s, as she joined the group Rangayan, which was founded by Vijaya Mehta, Vijay Tendulkar, Arvind Deshpande and Shriram Lagoo. Soon, she started her acting career, though she first received acclaim when she won state-level competitions for her plays like Madhlya Bhintee and Sasaa Ani Kasav. After Rangayan dispersed, she along with her husband Arvind Deshpande, and Arun Kakade formed the theatre group, Awishkar in 1971. Having played the lead role of Leela Benare in Vijay Tendulkar's noted play Shantata! Court Chalu Ahe in 1967 she established her caliber. Later she reprised her role in the 1971 film version of the play directed by Satyadev Dubey, which turned out to be breakthrough role in feature films. Thereafter she went on to work extensively both in Hindi cinema as well as Marathi cinema, and directors like Shyam Benegal, through the height of Indian new wave cinema, in the 1970s and 1980s.
Awishkar was housed in the Chhabildas Hall at the Chhabildas Boys' High School, Mumbai, and thus gave rise to Chabildas theatre movement of amateur theatre. It also holds adult education workshops and trains young adults. Soon, she established the Chandrashala, the children's theatre wing of Awishkar, and directed plays like Baba Harvale Ahet, Raja Ranila Ghaam Hava and Pandit Pandit Tujhi Akkal Shendit and notably the Sangeet Natak, Durga jhali Gauri (Durga Became Gauri) in 1982, a dance drama with a cast of seventy children. She later directed the Hindi film version of the play Raja Ranila Ghaam Hava in 1978. After nearly 18 years of its establishment, Awishkar's association with Chhabildas school ended and the group restarted at the Mahim Municipal School, where it continues to hold its theatre productions, workshops and annual school production of Durga jhali Gauri performed by a new cast each year. Notable Bollywood actors Nana Patekar and Urmila Matondkar have been students of Chandrashala. She was playing a role of Grandmother-in-law in Zee Marathi's Serial Asmita.
She was married to noted theatre actor-director, Arvind Deshpande, who died in 1987.
|1971||Shantata! Court Chalu Aahe||Leela Benare||Marathi|
|1974||Jadu Ka Shankh जादू का शंख||Hindi|
|1975||Zindagi Aur Toofan||Hindi|
|1977||Jait Re Jait जैत रे जैत||Marathi|
|1978||Arvind Desai Ki Ajeeb Dastaan अरविंद देसाई की अजीब दास्तान||Hindi|
|1978||Kondura||Kanthamma||Hindi / Telugu|
|1980||Albert Pinto Ko Gussa Kyoon Aata Hai अल्बर्ट पिंटो को गुस्सा क्यों आता है||Albert's mother||Hindi|
|1980||Yeh Kaisa Insaf यह कैसा इंसाफ||Hindi|
|1982||Bheegi Palkein||Janki Kishan Acharya||Hindi|
|1984||Hech Maza Maher हेच माझं माहेर||Hindi|
|1985||Ghar Dwaar घर द्वार||Hindi|
|1985||Sur Sangam सुर संगम||Hindi|
|1988||Salaam Bombay! सलाम बोम्बे!||Social Worker at Welfare Centre||Hindi|
|1988||Khoon Bhari Maang खून भरी मांग||Hindi|
|1990||Ghar Ho To Aisa घर हो तो ऐसा||Dipti Naval's Mother||Hindi|
|1991||Dushman Devta दुश्मन देवता||Hindi|
|1991||Chaukat Raja चौकट राजा||Nandu's mother||Marathi|
|1992||Dil Aashna Hai दिल आशना है||Hindi|
|1992||Jaan Tere Naam जान तेरे नाम||Hindi|
|1993||Aadmi Khilona Hai आदमी खिलौना है||Hindi|
|1994||Mister Aajad मिस्टर आजाद||Hindi|
|1995||Ab Insaf Hoga अब इंसाफ होगा||Hindi|
|1996||Badalte Rishte बदलते रिश्ते||Hindi|
|1997||Virasat विरासत||Bali's mother||Hindi|
|1997||Ek Phool Teen Kante एक फूल तीन कांटे||Hindi|
|1997||Common Man कॉमन मॅन||Hindi|
|1997||Raja Ki Aayegi Baraat राजा की आयेगी बारात||Hindi|
|1998||Yug Purush युगपुरुष||Hindi|
|2001||Daughters of This Century डॉटर्स ऑफ धिस सेंचुरी||Hemlata||Hindi|
|2005||The Film द फिल्म||Hindi|
|2005||Darpan Ke Piche दर्पण के पीछे||Hindi|
|2011||Mala Aai Vhhaychy!||Marathi|
|2012||English Vinglish||Mrs. Godbole||Hindi|
|1978||Raja Rani Ko Chahiye Pasina||Hindi||Children's film|
|1986||Chhoti Badi Baatein||Hindi|
|Rishtey (Season 1)
Episode: Jeeya Jaaye Naa...
|Rishtey (Season 2)
|1995||Aahat Season 1 1995-2001 episode 116-117 Tasveer||Hindi||Sony TV|
|2004||Kumkum - Ek Pyara Sa Bandhan||Hindi||Star Plus|
|2006||Resham Dankh||Hindi||STAR One|
|2008||Ek Packet Umeed||Hindi||NDTV Imagine|
|2011||Mrs. Tendulkar||Hindi||SAB TV|
|2013||Kehta Hai Dil Jee Le Zara||Hindi||Sony Entertainment Television|
|Shantata! Court Chalu Aahe||Marathi|
|Raja Ranila Ghaam Hava||Marathi|
|Durga Zaali Gauri||Marathi|
|Baba Harvale Ahet||Marathi|
|Pandit Pandit Tujhi Akkal Shendit||Marathi|
She was awarded the Sangeet Natak Akademi Award for theatre acting in Marathi and Hindi theatre in 1987, the award is given by the Sangeet Natak Akademi, India's National Academy of Music, Dance & Drama. It is the highest Indian recognition given to practising artists. She also received the award, Tanveer Sanman in 2010. She has also been honoured by various other awards like Nanasaheb Phatak Puraskar, Ganpatrao Joshi Puraskar, Vasantrao Kanetkar Puraskar, Kusumagraj Puraskar, Rangabhoomi Jeevan Gaurav Puraskar and Sarvashrestha Kalagaurav Puraskar by Sanskruti Kaladarpan.
- "Veteran actor, theatre person Sulabha Deshpande passes away". Indian Express. 4 June 2016. Retrieved 4 June 2016.
- "Theatre guru Satyadev Dubey passes away". The Hindu. 25 December 2011. Retrieved 10 December 2012.
- "Interview : 'Reaction matters to me'". The Hindu. 16 November 2008. Retrieved 10 December 2012.
- "Quality, not quantity of life, matters, feels Sulabha Deshpande". Indian Express. 13 October 2012.
- Vijay Tendulkar. Five Plays For Children. Scholastic India. p. introduction. ISBN 8184771339.
- "Tanveer Sanman for Sulabha Deshpande". The Times of India. 2 December 2010. Retrieved 10 December 2012.
- "Tanveer Sanman for veteran actress Sulabha Deshpande". DNA. 4 December 2010.
- Rustom Bharucha (1990). Theatre and the World: Performance and the Politics of Culture. Routledge. p. 113. ISBN 0415092167.
- Don Rubin (1998). The World Encyclopedia of Contemporary Theatre: Volume 5: Asia/Pacific. Taylor & Francis. p. 203. ISBN 041505933X.
- "Shantata! Awishkar Chalu Aahe". Mumbai Theatre Guide. August 2008.
- Agnihotri, Aarati (12 October 2012). "मैने अच्छी सास का रोल किया है इंग्लिश-विंग्लिश में". Dainik Bhaskar (in Hindi). Chandigarh. Retrieved 11 December 2012.
- "Remembering Arvind Deshpande (May 31, 1932 – January 3, 1987)". January 2007.
- ज्येष्ठ अभिनेत्री सुलभा देशपांडे यांच्या पार्थिवावर अंत्यसंस्कार
- ज्येष्ठ अभिनेत्री सुलभा देशपांडे यांचे निधन Archived 5 June 2016 at the Wayback Machine
- "'Resham Dankh' goes on air on Star One from August 14". WebIndia123. 29 July 2006. Retrieved 16 November 2018.
- Sulabha Deshpande
- "SNA: List of Akademi Awardees". Sangeet Natak Akademi Official website. Archived from the original on 17 February 2012.
- "नोंद : सुलभा देशपांडे". Maharashtra Times (in Marathi). 5 March 2011. Retrieved 11 December 2012.
- "सुलभा देशपांडे यांना "सर्वश्रेष्ठ कलागौरव'". Sakal (in Marathi). Mumbai. 26 March 2012. Archived from the original on 22 January 2013. Retrieved 11 December 2012.