National School of Drama helped shape my career: Chittaranjan Tripathy

- March 27, 2024
| By : Idrees Bukhtiyar |

In an exclusive interview with Patriot on World Theatre Day, Chittaranjan Tripathy, who starred in 'Yodha' and 'Bhakshak' and is currently NSD's director, attributes his success to his training at the National School of Drama

BACK TO SCHOOL: Tripathy is now the director of the NSD

Bollywood film actor-director Chittaranjan Tripathy says that the National School of Drama (NSD) has nourished him and his career, and given it the right path.

“Whatever I am today is all because of my grooming at NSD. I have learnt every basic thing in this institute. It has shaped my career in every way,” he told Patriot.

“I am surviving and working all because of the NSD. I can’t imagine my life without this prestigious department,” he said.

Tripathy who is currently working as Director of NSD says that he never thought of getting this position in his life.

“During the COVID period in 2020, there was no work available. I came across this vacancy and I applied for it randomly but much to my surprise I was selected. The institute where you have studied once and now you are heading it, this means a lot to me,” he says.

On October 6 last year, Tripathy was appointed as the Director of NSD, one of the most challenging responsibilities as far as the theatre industry is concerned.

While talking about his days of struggle, the 53-year-old actor says that when he passed out from NSD, he had only Rs 70 in his pocket.

“I used to go to the Refugee Market where I would get dal-roti for just Rs 7. I was sure that at least I could eat food for the next 10 days but was unsure what would happen after that. But God was graceful, I started getting some projects after a few days. There was a hope of survival again,” he says.

“I didn’t have money. Nor did I ask for the same from my father as he had done a lot for me. In the beginning, it was very tough but with time, things changed,” he says.

During his days of struggle, Tripathy used to go to ITO to eat parathas.

“My friends who had money used to take me there but those joints have shut now,” says Tripathy who hails from Odisha.

He says that he didn’t know many people in the city then. “I was only familiar with places like Mandi House and ITO. I didn’t used to venture out much,” he says.

He always had a resolve for becoming an actor.

“I was strict about new things. I was always eager and serious about acting as a career and wanted to learn. That’s what brought me to NSD,” says Tripathy, who studied in the institute from 1993-1996.

When asked what has changed in all these years at NSD, he says, “Old faculty members have retired and the outer look has also changed.”

He calls the ‘Delhi theatre industry’ the best in the country.

“All we need to have is more theatres in the city. But the problem of lack of theatres is prevalent in different cities across the country. The big stars like Manoj Bajpayee, Naseeruddin Shah and Anupam Kher, all have done theatre in the national capital. They all have been part of this city,” says Tripathy, who was inspired by actors like Amitabh Bachchan and Naseeruddin Shah to join this field.

He says that the film Industry is always looking for talented people.

“Talent, skills and hard work are what they see. It is not necessary that you should be the kid of a start to make an entry into Bollywood. Many star kids are not doing well in the industry. On the contrary,there have been many unknown faces who made a mark in the industry because of their skills,” he says.

Talking about his projects, the actor says that he has appeared in the recently released Sidharth Malhotra starrer film Yodha and Bhumi Pednekar starrer Bhakshak.

Tripathy believes that everyone in this world is struggling.

“Be it in the field of acting or some other field, everyone is struggling for a better life. This struggle has to be inside you and it will help you grow and take you to new heights,” he says.

Tripathy is best known for his roles in the Netflix series SacredGames and the film Shubh Mangal Saavdhan.