Ganpat Sakharam Masge

Shri Ganpat Sakharam Masge was born in 1958 in Pinguli village of Sindhudurg district in Maharashtra into a family of traditional puppeteers. He was initiated into the art of the Kalasutri Bahulya, which employs string puppets, by his father Bhikaji Sakharam Masge. He also learnt Chitrakathi — story-telling with pictures — and Chamdayacha Bahulya, the play with leather puppets, in his days as apprentice to his father. Shri Masge has excelled in his practice of puppetry and has taken the art of Kalasutri Bahulya beyond Maharashtra, contributing to its wider recog- nition in the country. He has established a troupe of his own in Pinguli. Like many other traditional puppeteers, he is the creator of his own puppets and the designer of his costumes. Shri Masge has participated in seminars on puppetry organiz- ed in various towns and cities in the country. He has also taken part in workshops, training school teachers as well as craftsmen. His work has received well-deserved praise in several papers and magazines. Shri Ganpat Sakharam Masge receives the Sangeet Natak Akademi Award for his contribution to the puppetry of Maharashtra.