Many have written about him before the film. Many will wrtite for time to come. He was a legend. Legends never die.
I want to record two things that struck me.
The way Anand Bate has rendered his immortal songs. Outstanding ! I heard original records of Bal Gandharva and and Anand Bhate back to back. Similarity of voice and style is remarkable. There are many and there will be many who aspire to sing like Bal Gandharva. Both male and female have tried as singers. So far I thought Jaymalabai is nearest to him. Now I will hand that honour to Ananad Bhate. The freshness of voice was vital to bring that era alive on the screen. That is where he scores very high.
Other is Subodh Bhave. Outstanding performance. I have seen many male actors mimicking Bal Gandharva draped in female attire. Horrible would be correct word for them invariably. Again I have seen Jayamalabai playing his roles in his style. She is a lady of grace but a lady after all. I have seen Balgandhrva only at very late stage of his life when he turned to Devotional music. I would not able to understand how this toothless bald man ruled Marathi stage. Only the smile was electrifying. Jaymalabai would give some glimpse of it. Subodh Bhave has left undying image of Bal Gandharva. After Tukaram was produced Vishupant Pagnis became icon for Tukaram face. Subodh Bhave has done same.
I think both are lucky to get such great opportunity. They will go down the history for perfect rendering of a legend.
But at the last we cannot forget “ ASA GANDHARVA ATA PUNHA NA HONE.”