New Delhi: Eminent Indian playwright Mahesh Elkunchwar has been chosen for this year's META Lifetime Achievement Award, organisers announced on Monday.
The playwright will be conferred upon with the award on March 12, along with the winners of the 14th Mahindra Excellence in Theatre Awards (META) festival.
One of India's most progressive playwrights, Elkunchwar is critically-acclaimed and widely-known for having experimented with a wide range of drama and is considered a powerful force in both Indian and Marathi theatre scene.
"Mahesh Elkunchwar's oeuvre has a towering presence in the dramatic arts of our country and the Mahindra Group is delighted that the META Selection Committee has chosen him as this year's META Lifetime Achievement Award recipient.
"He represents theatre stalwarts whose contribution to India's theatre movement will be cherished for generations to come," said Jay Shah, Head, Cultural Outreach, Mahindra & Mahindra Ltd.
A recipient of the Sangeet Natak Akademi Fellowship, Elkunchwar has over 30 plays and essays to his credit including works like 'Sultan', 'Holi', 'Garbo', 'Yatanaghar', and 'Atmakatha'.
His 1985 play 'Wada Chirebandi' (Old Stone Mansion) has been staged in Marathi, Hindi and Bengali, besides being adapted for television.
Previous recipients of the award include Vijaya Mehta, Zohra Sehgal, Badal Sarkar, Khaled Chowdhary, Ebrahim Alkazi, Girish Karnard, Heisnam Kanhailal, Ratan Thiyam and Arun Kakade.
The week-long theatre festival beginning March 6, will feature 10 shortlisted plays including 'Agarbatti' (Hindi and Bundeli), 'Andha Yug' (Gujarati and Hindi), 'Kola' (Kannada) and 'Loose Woman' that will be staged at Kamani Auditorium and Shri Ram Centre here.
"It is great to see the diversity and vibrancy that is reflected in Indian Theatre. META is not just a festival but a platform to showcase the best of Indian theatre, highlighting the incredible energy and passion that theatre persons bring to the stage against all odds," festival producer Sanjoy K Roy said.
The jury for this year includes renowned theatre artist, actor and screenwriter Akash Khurana, popular actress and singer Ila Arun, actor Kulbhushan Kharbanda, and dance historian Sunil Kothari among others.