Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Three Actors with their Metropolitan Prefixes.


          Celebrities at times would like to carry the names of their native places, along with their names.We have come across this practice among politicians,Carnatic singers and musicians as well as actors.Among singers and musicians the list is quite vast.Names like Chembai Vaidhiyanadha Bhagavadhar,Semmangudi Sriniasa Aiyyar,Ariyakudi Ramanujam,Lalgudi Jeyaraman and Madhurai Mani Aiyyar, would still keep vibrating in the memory of ardent fans of carnatic music.Besides these, we have popular playback singers like Sirkazhi.S.Govindarajan,Chidambaram Jeyaraman and Tiruchi Loganathan .Lyricists like Pattukottai Kalyanasundaram,Thanjai Ramaiahdas were equally popular. Actors like Tiruchi Soundarajan, Suruli Rajan and Thalaivasal Vijay are carriers of the names of their native places.But there are three actors who have prefixed the names of metropolises along with their names.They are Delhi Ganesh,Delhi Kumar and Calcutta Viswanathan.
    Among these three, the first name is the most popular, because he has been a prolific actor on the stage and on the big and small screens.Born in Tirunelveli, he took the Delhi prefix after being a significant part of the Dehi drama troupe.It was K.Balachander the peerless peak among directors who first put him on the Tamil cinema map with a breaking entry in Pattanapravesam released in 1976. From then on, he made a four decade journey through the tinsel world acting in more than 400 films besides acting in about eighteen television serials starting from Marma Dhesam, till the latest Chellame.Delhi Ganesh fits himself neatly into paternal roles, as a perfect father figure.
      Aaha,Arasu, Aanandham,Saamy,Edhiri, Vettaikkaran and Thenavettu are a few outstanding samples of the numerous father roles he played.Of these Anandam will be ever remembered for his excellent role performance as the patriarch of a well knit joint family.On the comedy side, Delhi Ganesh has scored most remarkable innings in films like Michael Madhana Kamarajan,Tenali,Avvai Shanmugi and Kadhala Kadhala.Crazi Mohan's dialogues added pep to their joint show.It was a perfect combination of intelligence and comedy creating best laughter moments.With the same fervor, this great actor performed a villain role, in Kamal's Abhoorva Sagodharargal.
    Even in elderly governing roles, one could see him casually mixing humor in performing his character, with interesting twists in dialogues as seen in Tamizhan. Delhi Ganesh has also frequently joined Visu's band wagon, for films like Chidambara Ragasiyam,Samsaaram Adhu Minsaaram and Patrukottai Periyappa. As a dipsomaniac he did captivating roles, in K.Balachande'r Sindhu Bhairavi and Sundar.C's London. What takes him closer to the audience as an endearing actor is his soothing,clear and impressive dialogue delivery, as a spontaneous by product of acting.Perhaps it is his stage sense that has made him deliver dialogues with utmost comfort and ease..
    Metti Oli Serial fame Delhi Kumar known as 'Television father' has meaningfully occupied the small screen taking up dignified paternal roles in other equally famous serials like Chithi,Anandam, Mudhanai Mudichu and the on going Thalayanai Pookkal. His first appearance in Tamil Cinema was for Dum Dum Dum directed by R.Kannan of the Mani Rathnam school of film making.He gave an unforgettable performance in that film competing with the veteran Malayalam actor {late}Murali. His Tirunelveli Tamil was specially appealing in that film.His other notable film entries are Mani Rathnam's  Kannathil Muthamittaal,Shankar's Endhiran and Hari's Singam I and II.Unlike Delhi Ganesh,Delhi Kumar is more a sober actor, capable of forcefully stamping the sensitive side of fatherhood.It is not that he is incapable of delivering humor.On the other hand, comedy could be called the distinct fortress of Delhi Ganesh. In performing father roles, both these actors with their Delhi prefixes, have cast their indelible impressions.
     The other actor whose origins could be linked to Vellore in Tamil Nadu,is totally of a different mettle.Though he too takes his metropolitan prefix because of his chronic association with the Calcutta troupe of stage actors,he has the distinction of bearing a high profile academic background. Yes.Calcutta N.Viswanathan who is no more today, had the singular pride of teaching English at St.Xaviers' College, Calcutta for nearly forty years,besides performing stage plays and acting in films. His other unique position is the fact that he had acted in the films of Mrinal Sen and Satyajit Ray and his Bengali films were more in number than his Tamil list.It is K. Balachander who once again has to be credited for inducting this special actor in Tamil Cinema.
    As the father of an unimaginably aggressive son {played by Rajinikanth} in Moonru Mudichu, another memorable Balachander film,he delivered a commendable  role play, in taming his virtually bad son, with the help of his young second wife {Sridevi},whom his son wanted to marry by cleverly killing her lover. Viswanathan's first Tamil film was his best too.Next in a villain  role bearing a holy name 'Parisutham"{The Immaculate}he displayed sweet coated villainy, reminding everyone of the verity behind Shakespeare's maxim, 'one may smile and smile and be a villain'.It was a character full of venom dipped in tons of sweetness. Viswanathan as an actor, can ever be remembered for the perfect underplay of emotions and an incomparable poise in performance.His other notable Tamil films are Moodu Pani,Enakkul Oruvan,Mogam Muppadhu Varusham,Kan Sivandhal Man Sivakkum,Nilavu Suduvadhillai and Baba.
       These three actors with their metropolitan prefixes, certainly reflect the structural majesty and grandeur in their acting mold.Though Delhi Ganesh and Kumar have brought out the rural impact on their acting styles, it could be rightly said that all the three actors are more compact in refined character portrayal, with absolute grasp of the aristocratic side, which was perfectly personified by an actor of long standing repute like S.V.Renga Rao, whose splendid style of acting had a monumental influence on many actors, performing character roles.These three men have certainly brought out a kind of aristocratic caliber in their acting career.

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