Chandalika – watch the complete film on Vimeo on demand

Chandalika, directed by Obhi Chatterjee, is the authentic film version of the classic dance-drama created by Nobel laureate Rabindranath Tagore as part of his campaign to raise awareness of the plight of the ‘untouchables’ and the unfairness of the caste system. Originally written in 1933 as a play, Tagore developed it into a dance-drama in 1938.

Prokrithi, an untouchable girl who is shunned by other villagers because of her caste, discovers a new life when Anondo, a Buddhist monk, asks her for water and tells her that she is no less a human than he is.

Kaberi Chatterjee stars as Prokrithi, with the singing voice of Manini Mukhopadhyay. Sourav Chatterjee is Anondo, with the singing voice of Kuntal Chakraborty, and Gitanjali Sarkar is Prokrithi’s mother, with the singing voice of Kushni Saren. All the dancers, singers and musicians are leading performers from Santiniketan, India.

The dance director and production designer is Shubhra Tagore. The music director is Bulbul Basu.

Chandalika is part of the Tagore dance film trilogy of authentic, widescreen film versions of Tagore’s dance-dramas, the others being Chitrangada (1936) and Shyama (1939).

Chandalika had its world première on 8 May 2011 at the Stratford Picturehouse as the closing event of the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust’s Tagore weekend to mark Tagore’s 150th birth anniversary.

Running time: 73 minutes.