Based on the circa 2nd century BCE to 2nd Century CE, Sanskrit play "Daridra-Charudatta" by the famous Indian playwright Bhasa, "Utsav" faithfully follows Bhasa's story-line. Vasantasena, a... See full summary »



(script), (play) | 3 more credits »
2 wins. See more awards »
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Cast overview, first billed only:
Anonymous revolutionary
Shankar Nag ...
Kunal Kapoor ...
Anuradha Patel ...
Aditi (as Anooradha)
Sansthanak's friend
Gopi Desai
Lakshmi Krishnamurthy ...
(as Lakshmi Krishnamurty)
Charudatta (as Manjunath Shekhar Suman)
Rajesh Puri


Based on the circa 2nd century BCE to 2nd Century CE, Sanskrit play "Daridra-Charudatta" by the famous Indian playwright Bhasa, "Utsav" faithfully follows Bhasa's story-line. Vasantasena, a courtesan who dances at the King Palaka's court hides in Charudatta's house while running away from the amorous attentions of the king's brother-in-law. She falls in love with Charudatta, though he is married and penniless. They have an affair. Meanwhile, the rightful heir to the throne - King Palaka's brother - escapes from prison. While he is being pursued by the king's troops, Charudatta helps him. The king's brother-in-law strangles Vasantasena when she refuses to submit to him and leaves her for dead. When Charudatta tries to have her jewels pawned, he is arrested for her murder. What happens to him and the other characters constitutes the final part of the film. Written by Anonymous

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Release Date:

23 August 1984 (India)  »

Also Known As:

The Festival  »

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Did You Know?


The first silent film of Kannada film industry was 'Mricchakatika'(Vasantsena) in 1931, starring Kamaladevi Chattopadhyay. Girish Karnad who directed Utsav is from Karnataka (South Indian state) and is well versed and a known scholar in Kannada language. See more »


Saanjh Dhale Gagan Tale Ham Kitne Ekaami
Lyrics by Vasant Dev
Music by Laxmikant and Pyarelal
Performed by Suresh Wadkar
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User Reviews

A classic tale of love
14 August 2005 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Directed by Girish Karnad, this movie is a pure delight to watch. Within a comparatively small budget, the director, has managed to recreate the period atmosphere of the Gupta age complete with lavish sets and costumes. Competent performances by all and some incredible music by Laxmikant Pyarelal's songs like Saanjh Dale, Man kyun Behaka, Neelam pe naleh chhaye have been wonderfully choreographed. What made this movie thoroughly enjoyable were the delightful characters: Courtesans, Musicians, Burglars, revolutionaries etc all cleverly inter-woven in this wonderful story of Vasantsena, played by Rekha, seen through the eyes of Vatsyayana the author of "Kamasutra".

Rekha's performance as Vasantsena is marvellous. It is a classic movie about eroticism told in a non-titillating way. For example in the scene where Vasantsena takes off her ornaments with the aid of Charudutt is one of the most poetic eroticism I have ever seen.


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