Interview | Tarlochan Singh | Actor-Director

Meet Tarlochan Singh the real life ‘Coach’ of Bathinda Express Hero Deep Joshi
Interview by Deep Jagdeep Singh

The most awaited movie Bathinda Express is all set to release on 8th April and the whole team is on promotional spree around Punjab from almost a week now. While all the glittering faces of the cast and crew are going gaga in front of camera flash lights, a man is still busy in rehearsals of this upcoming theatre play at the open air theatre at Punjabi Bhawan, Ludhiana. Few days back when team JP visited the spot playwright, theatre director and actor Tarlochan Singh was busy discussing the final blockings of his next play. Tarlochan Singh, who is portraying the role of an athletic coach in Bathinda Express, is a real life theatre teacher of lead hero Deep Joshi. In a candid chat he shared his cherished moments of shooting, life and aspirations of Deep Joshi and his association with the theatre.

JP: Tell us about the film and what is your role in the film?
Tarlochan Singh: It is a film about a common boy of Punjab Inder (Deep Joshi), who with his dreamy eyes hits the tracks to run a race of his life. I am his coach in the film. With his endless energy and passion for the game, he looks promising, but suddenly his life goes off track and he drifts from his dreams, love and life completely. It is a journey of discovering a lost hope. I think Bathinda Express will be a welcoming change in Punjabi cinema, though I have not yet watched the film, I am anticipating a full on experience in the cinema hall. 

Tarlochan Singh with his Drama Team Rang Manch Rang Nagari
Tarlochan Singh with his Drama Team Rang Manch Rang Nagari
JP: how you got associated with the Film?
Tarlochan Singh: One day Deep Joshi came to me with this script and told me that he has written a character for me. When he described about the character, I thought, he has observed me during those days when he was a member of my drama team. I immediately accepted the offer.

JP: To get into the shoes of an athletics coach, have you gone through sports training?
Tarlochan Singh: Not at All. During my college days I myself was a gymnastic player and participated in many national level sports championships. I have observed my own coach during my training days. For me it was playing myself in front of camera.
JP: You mean this character is similar to your real personality?
Tarlochan Singh: Not completely, but it has a lot of ingredients which I can say relates to me. As a writer Deep Joshi has written a very meaty character which looks like a real life coach.
JP: Deep Joshi was a member of your drama team; you were his theatre ‘coach’. Now he is a director of the film and you are one of the actors. What were your feelings when your pupil was directing you for your shots? 
Tarlochan Singh: For me it was a proud moment. When Deep Joshi joined out drama team he was very energetic, confident and dreamy. He used to ask will I be able to do this. I had full confidence in him.  I asked him to join MA Theatre at Punjabi University if he really wanted to pursue acting as a career. He did his MA and latter moved to Mumbai. He did remarkable work from the very beginning and created a respectable space for himself in the industry. He never looked back and With Bathinda Express he has evolved as refined director, writer and actor. I had full confidence in him, while he was directing me.
JP: Did you give any tips to him during the shooting?
Tarlochan Singh: Not at all. It was his film and I had full faith that he will be making a remarkable film. As an actor I surrendered myself to the director, even if he was my student in the past. I believe every director has his film in his mind. I didn’t feel like interfering in his creativity.

JP: What are your expectations from the film?
Tarlochan Singh: Bathinda Express is a very unique film. If audience accepts it, it will be marking a major shift in Punjabi cinema. And I am very hopeful that that audience wants to watch meaningful and entertaining cinema. Bathinda Express is a family entertainer with a tinge of some real issues. As an actor and theatre artist it is a great experiment for me. If it works my work will be recoganised at larger extent else my Rang Manch Rang Nagari is what I live for. The show must go on…





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