Versatile actor and one of the biggest faces of the Marathi theatre Shriram Lagoo passed away on Tuesday in Pune. He acted in over 200 films including Hindi and Marathi films as well as Hindi, Marathi and Gujarati plays, and directed over 20 Marathi plays. He was considered one of greatest actors of Marathi stage during the second half of twentieth century. He was also very vocal and active in furthering progressive and rational social causes.
Shriram Lagoo was born in Satara district, Maharashtra to Balakrishna Chintaman Lagoo and Satyabhama Lagoo, and was the eldest of four children. After receiving a degree in medicines from the University of Mumbai in the fifties, Lagoo practiced as a doctor for some years before totally devoting his life to plays and films. Infact he started acting in plays while attending the Medical College. Once bitten by theatre bug, he continued his dramatic activity through a group “Progressive Dramatic Association”, which he started with like-minded senior friends like Bhalba Kelkar.
He started his career as actor in films with projects like Aahat, Pinjra, Mere Saath Chal and Samna. These films released in the early seventies but made filmmakers realise Lagoo’s talent as a character artist. During the eighties and nineties, he became a very familiar face for the viewers of Hindi and Marathi cinema as he acted in more than five dozen films during this period. He started taking up less projects after 1990 but was very active on the theatre front.
He earned many awards during his long career. In 1978, he received Filmfare Best Supporting Actor Award for his work in Gharaonda. He was also a recipient of the Kalidas Samman in 1997. He was given the Master Dinanath Mangeshkar Smruti Pratisthan in 2006. He was given the Sangeet Natak Akademi Fellowship in 2010.
Dr. Lagoo also wrote a book, an autobiography titled Lamaan, which means “the carrier of goods”.