Ramdas Kamath



Born on 18 February 1931 in Mhapsa, Goa, Shri Ramdas Kamat belongs to the generation of actors who were known for their singing talents in Marathi sangeet natak apart from their virtuoso acting skills. Born to a family of musicians, Shri Kamat's initiation into classical music began at the feet of his father Shantaram Kamat, who was a classical vocalist. Shri Ramdas Kamat earned his BA (Hons) degree in Economics from Wilson College in 1953. He started taking lessons in classical music from his eldest brother Upendra Kamat till 1966. He also learnt from Shri Yeshwant Joshi. Later he learnt natya sangeet from the likes of Jitendra Abhisheki (credited with revival of Marathi sangeet natak in the 60s), Govindrao Agni (an eminent classical vocalist), Bhalchandra Pendharkar (a film personality who was awarded Dadasaheb Phalke award), and Bhimsen Joshi (a doyen of Indian classical music) among others. Apart from his training in singing, he learnt the nuances of acting from the likes of Gopinath Sawkar (actor-director of Marathi sangeet natak), M G Rangnekar (famous for his realist settings and middle-class themes with easy to sing music), Master Dattaram (a very popular and critically acclaimed actor), among others.
Shri Ramdas Kamat had started to act in musicals (sangeet natak) such as Vishnupant Saunjhkar’s Bebadshahi, Swayamvar, Vidyaharan during 1944-46, when he was in his teens. After his training in classical music and Marathi natya sangeet, he earned his empanelment with All India Radio, Mumbai. An ‘A’ grade artist with All India Radio, he sang both Marathi and Konkani songs. Apart from his early plays, Shri Kamat played central roles in many musical dramas (sangeet natak) such as Parashar, and Raja Bhoj in Vasant Kanetkar’s plays Matysyagandha and Meera Madhura, Kach in Vishnu Vaman Shirwadkar’s Yayati and Devayani, etc. Shri Kamat has given almost 4000 performances in these and many other plays he acted in. He has also given almost 350 performances in classical music and Marathi natya sangeet, both in India and abroad. His contribution towards training upcoming artists in natya sangeet is significant.
Shri Ramdas Kamat has been felicitated by the Government of Maharashtra and a number of institutions such as Akhil Bhartiya Natya Parishad, Gomantak Marathi Academy among others.
Shri Ramdas Kamat receives the Sangeet Natak Akademi Award for 2014 for his contribution to Indian theatre as an actor.