Chittoor V. Nagayya
Chittor V. Nagaiah actor.jpg
Born
Vuppaladadiyam Nagayya

(1904-03-28)28 March 1904
Died30 December 1973(1973-12-30) (aged 69)
OccupationActor, composer, director, producer, writer and playback singer
Years active1938–1973
AwardsPadma Shri (1965)

Chittoor V. Nagayya (born Vuppaladadiyam Nagayya Sarma; 28 March 1904 – 30 December 1973) was an Indian actor, singer, composer, screenwriter, director, and producer known for his work in Telugu cinema, Tamil cinema, and Telugu theatre. Indian film journalist and the editor of Film India, Baburao Patel, described Nagayya as "The Paul Muni of India".[1][2] According to S. Muthiah, Nagayya was considered the best character actor in South cinema during 1938-1950s.[1] In 1965, he became the first South Indian actor to receive the Padma Shri in arts from the Government of India for his contributions to Indian cinema.[1][3][4] In his honour, the Chittoor Nagayya Kalakshetram of Arts was established in Chittoor of Andhra Pradesh.[5]

Brought up in Chittoor, Nagayya was closely connected to Rama Vilasa Sabha, a Telugu theatre association in the city. He performed and directed several stage plays, such as Sarangadhara, Viswamithra Chitra Nilayam, Savitri, Bruhannala and Ramadasu. He staged the roles of Telugu saint-poets Pothana, Vemana, Ramadasu, and Tyagaraja. While acting in a stage production at the Victoria Public Hall, Madras he was spotted by B. N. Reddy. At this juncture H. M. Reddy formed Rohini Pictures with the association of B. N. Reddy. The studio started its first venture in Telugu through the film Gruhalakshmi in 1938, in which Nagayya played a significant role. When the partners decided to go their own ways, Nagayya followed B.N. Reddy to his new venture, Vauhini Studios. Later, he worked in several films with Vauhini Studios including social films such as Vande Mataram (1939), Sumangali (1940), Devata (1941), Swarga Seema (1945), and Beedhalapatlu (1947).[6]

Nagayya made significant contributions to Telugu cinema, and starred in about two hundred Telugu films.[7] He was a method actor, and his forte was usually playing intense characters, often immersing himself in the study of the real character's traits and mannerisms.[8] Nagayya was the protagonist in the most expensive 1940 Telugu production, Viswa Mohini, touted to be the first film on the Indian motion picture world.[9][10][11] He prominent film roles include the 14th-century poet Pothana in Bhakta Potana (1942), 17th-century saint Tyagaraja in Thyagayya (1946), 12th-century saint Gora Kumbhar in Chakradhari (1948), and Sivaram in the social problem film Naa Illu (1953). In 1964, Nagayya essayed the 17th-century saint Bhadrachala Ramadasu in the film Ramadasu which he had also co-written, directed and produced. The film won the National Film Award for Best Feature Film in Telugu.[12] Nagayya also starred in about one hundred and sixty films in Tamil, Kannada, Malayalam, and Hindi.[13]

Early life

screenshot of Nagayya in a talking picture
screenshot of Nagayya in a talking picture
Statue of Nagayya in Film Nagar, Hyderabad
Statue of Nagayya in Film Nagar, Hyderabad

Nagayya was born on 28 March 1904 in a Telugu-speaking family in a tiny hamlet near Repalle, Guntur district, Andhra Pradesh. His parents were Ramalinga Sharma and Venkata Lakshmamba. His maternal grandmother adopted him and took him to her native village, Gonugur, near Kuppam and later to Chittoor. He took up studies with a scholarship provided by the Tirupati Devasthanam and took his degree in Chittoor.[14]

After working as a clerk in a government office, Nagayya became a journalist with Andhra Patrika. Mahatma Gandhi and Nehru influenced him and he participated in the freedom struggle (Dandi Satyagraha) in 1930, later going on to work for some gramophone companies including Hutchins as well as attending the Gowhati Congress conclave with S. Srinivasa Iyyengar.[15] He was married to Jaya Lakshmi, but she died giving birth to a daughter a year after. He then married Girija, and Girija, too died due to miscarriage in the eighth month. His first daughter died of an un-diagnosed illness. He then participated in long stays at Ramana Maharshi Ashram. He has family in Tirupati who are his brother's (Vuppaladadiyam Subrahmanya Sharma) son, Vuppaladadiyam S. Haragopal and daughters (Late Amruthavalli and Late Kusuma) , Lakshmi Narasimha and their children, Vuppaladadiyam Shyam Sundar and Vuppaladadiyam Pavan Kumar.[16]

Civilian honours

Awards

National Film Awards
State Awards

Filmography

Actor

Year Title Role Language Notes
1938 Gruhalakshmi Gopinath Telugu
1939 Vande Mataram Raghu Telugu
1940 Viswa Mohini A Film Director Telugu
1940 Sumangali Panthulu Telugu
1941 Devatha Venu Telugu
1941 Ashok Kumar King Ashoka Tamil
1943 Bhakta Potana Pothana Telugu
1943 Chenchu Lakshmi Chenchu Lakshmi's Father Telugu
1943 Bhagyalaxmi Srinivasa Rao Telugu
1945 Swargaseema Murthy Telugu
1945 Meera King of Mewar Hindi / Tamil
1946 Tyagayya Tyagayya Telugu
1947 Yogi Vemana Vemana Telugu
1948 Chakradhari Korakumbar Tamil
1948 Bhaktha Jana Namadeva Tamil
1949 Mana Desam Telugu
1949 Navajeevanam Mahadevan Tamil
1950 Ezhai Padum Padu Kandan Tamil
1950 Beedala Patlu Telugu
1951 Sarvadhikari Tamil
1952 Thai Ullam Tamil
1953 Ulagam Tamil
1953 Prapancham
1953 Penn Tamil
1953 Panakkari Tamil
1953 Naa Illu Sivaram Telugu
1953 Ladki Kamini's father Hindi
1953 Gumastha Ranganatham Tamil
1953 Gumasta Ranganatham Telugu
1953 En Veedu Shivram Tamil
1954 Viduthalai Periaswamy Tamil
1954 Thuli Visham Tamil
1954 Maa Gopi Telugu
1954 Edhir Paradhathu Dayaparar Tamil
1954 Prapancham Telugu
1954 Sangham Telugu
1955 Kanavaney Kankanda Deivam Tamil
1955 Anarkali Raja Mansingh Telugu
1955 Nam Kuzhandai Tamil
1956 Tenali Ramakrishna Mahamantri Thimmarusu Telugu
1956 Uma Sundari Telugu
1956 Pennin Perumai Zamindar, father of Ragunathan / Nagendran Tamil
1956 Naga Panchami Telugu
1956 Muddu Bidda Telugu
1956 Marmaveeran Tamil
1956 Asai Tamil
1956 Bhakta Markandeya Kannada
1956 Bhakta Markandeya Tamil
1956 Bhakta Markandeya Telugu
1956 Amaradeepam
1956 Tenali Raman Appaji Tamil
1957 Yaar Paiyyan Tamil
1957 Vanangamudi Tamil
1957 Sati Savitri Telugu
1957 Panduranga Mahatyam Jahnavi Telugu
1957 Nala Damayanti Tamil
1957 Nala Damayanti Telugu
1957 Ambikapathy Raja Kulothunga Chola I, the father of Amaravathi Tamil
1958 Piya Milan
1958 Sampoorna Ramayanam Telugu
1958 Pati Bhakti Bhikshu Tamil
1958 Parvati Kalyanam Telugu
1958 Ettuku Pai Ettu Telugu
1958 Bommala Pelli Varadarajan Telugu
1958 Bommai Kalyanam Tamil
1958 Illarame Nallaram Tamil
1959 Jayabheri Viswambhara Sastri Telugu
1959 Sahodhari Pazhani, father of Chandiran and Meena Tamil
1959 Nalla Theerpu Tamil
1959 Mahishasura Mardini Shukracharya Kannada
1959 Kalaivanan Tamil
1959 Banda Ramudu Telugu
1960 Sri Venkateswara Mahatyam Bhavaji Telugu
1960 Abhimanam Telugu
1961 Sri Seetha Rama Kalyanam Dasarathudu Telugu
1961 Intiki Deepam Illale Telugu
1961 Vagdanam Vishwanatham (Vijaya's father) Telugu
1961 Sabash Raja Telugu
1961 Paava Mannippu Tamil
1961 Nichaya Thamboolam Ramanna, a teacher who is the father of Seetha (Jamuna) Tamil
1961 Nagarjuna Telugu
1961 Kappalottiya Thamizhan Ulaganatha Pillai Tamil
1961 Ellam Unakkaga Tamil
1961 Thirudathe Tamil
1961 Palum Pazhamum Tamil
1961 Manapanthal Tamil
1962 Gaali Medalu Ranganatham the father of Krishna (NTR) Telugu
1962 Dakshayagnam Dadhichi Tamil
1962 Dakshayagnam Dadhichi Telugu
1962 Swarnamanjari Telugu
1962 Aalayamani Tamil
1962 Valar Pirai Tamil
1962 Thendral Veesum Tamil
1962 Siri Sampadalu Nayudu Telugu
1962 Shantinivasam Ramadasu the father of four children Telugu
1962 Padandi Munduku Telugu
1963 Sri Krishnarjuna Yudham Akroora Telugu
1963 Lava Kusha Valmiki Maharshi Telugu
1963 Amarshilpi Jakanachari
1963 Naan Vanangum Dheivam Tamil
1963 Naanum Oru Penn Tamil
1963 Mani Osai
1963 Lava Kusa Valmiki Hindu
1963 Karpagam The father of Amudha (Savitri) Tamil
1963 Bandipotu Saluva Dharmanayaka Telugu
1963 Anuragam Telugu
1963 Lakshadhikari Lakshadhikari Rangaiah Telugu
1964 Bobbili Yudham Telugu
1964 Ramadasu Ramadasu Telugu
1964 Pachai Vilakku Gopalaiya Tamil
1964 Kai Koduttha Dheivam Father of Latha Tamil
1964 Amarshilpi Jakanna Telugu
1964 Aggi Pidugu Telugu
1964 Aatma Balam Telugu
1964 Amarashilpi Jakanachari Kannada
1964 Chandavalliya Tota Kannada
1964 Annapurna Father of Annapurna Kannada
1964 Devatha Father of Prasad Telugu
1964 Gudi Gantalu Telugu
1964 Aandavan Kattalai Doctor Tamil
1965 Sumangali Venkata Chalam Telugu
1965 Satya Harishchandra Vasistha Maharshi Telugu
1965 Devatha Telugu
1965 Santhi Tamil
1965 Preminchi Choodu Telugu
1965 Enga Veetu Penn Tamil
1965 Sri Simhachala Kshetra Mahima Father of Pururava Telugu
1965 Veerabhimanyu Telugu
1965 Dorikithe Dongalu Telugu
1966 Sri Krishna Pandaviyam Telugu
1966 Selvam Tamil
1966 Shakuntala Telugu
1966 Paramanandayya Sishyula Katha Paramanandaiah Telugu
1966 Parakkum Paavai Tamil
1966 Navarathri Telugu
1966 Motor Sundaram Pillai Tamil
1966 Bhakta Potana Vyasa Maharshi Telugu
1966 Adugu Jaadalu Telugu
1966 Aastiparulu Diwan to Zamindar Telugu
1966 Sadhu Mirandal Priest Micheal Tamil (Special Appearance)
1966 Saraswati Sabatham Vidhyapathy father Tamil
1967 Kanchukota Raja Rajendra Bhupathi Telugu
1967 Sri Krishnavataram Dhritarashtra Telugu
1967 Punyavathi Telugu
1967 Veera Pooja Telugu
1967 Rahasyam Telugu
1967 Poola Rangadu Veeraiya Telugu
1967 Patukunte Padivelu
1967 Iru Malargal Sivasamy Tamil
1967 Bhama Vijayam Telugu
1967 Maa Vadina Telugu
1967 Private Master Father of Private Master Telugu
1967 Marapurani Kadha Madhava Rao Telugu
1968 Brahmachari Telugu
1968 Ramu Tamil / Telugu
1968 Deva kanya (1968 film) Telugu
1968 Thillana Mohanambal Shanmugasundaram's Nadaswara Guru Tamil
1968 Nindu Samsaram Telugu
1968 Niluvu Dopidi Swamiji the director of an orphanage Telugu
1968 Bandhavyalu Telugu
1968 Uyarndha Manithan Manickam Tamil
1969 Saptaswaralu Telugu
1969 Nam Naadu The school master Kandhaya Tamil
1969 Mooga Nomu Telugu
1969 Deiva Magan Tamil
1969 Annaiyum Pithavum Tamil
1969 Aadarsa Kutumbam Telugu
1969 Natakala Rayudu Adiseshayya Telugu
1970 Akka Chellelu Second judge Telugu
1970 Kaalam Vellum (Guest Appearance)
1970 Thaali Bottu Telugu
1970 Engirundho Vandhaal Dharmalingam Tamil
1970 Thalli Thandrulu Raobahadur Perumallu Telugu
1970 Thabalkaran Thangai Tamil
1970 Raman Ethanai Ramanadi Director Nagaiya Tamil
1970 Kanmalar Tamil
1970 Sorgam Judge Tamil
1971 Srimanthudu Telugu
1971 Prema Nagar Doctor Telugu
1971 Vichithra Dampathyam Telugu
1971 Pavitra Bandham Telugu
1971 Sri Krishna Satya Telugu
1971 Raitu Kutumbam Telugu
1971 Kula Gourava Kannada
1971 Jeevitha Chakram Father of Raja (NTR) Telugu
1971 Iru Thuruvam Teacher Tamil
1971 C.I.D.Raju Telugu
1971 Thangaikkaaga Tamil
1971 Ramalayam Temple priest Telugu
1971 Pavitra Hrudayalu Zamindar Bhujanga Rao Telugu
1972 Sampoorna Ramayanam Vasishta Mahamuni Telugu
1972 Papam Pasivadu Doctor Telugu
1972 Shakti Leelai Tamil
1972 Pedda Koduku Telugu
1972 Neethi Judge Tamil
1972 Iddaru Ammayilu Laxman Rao Telugu
1972 Goodu Putani Telugu
1972 Beedala Patlu Telugu
1972 Bala Bharatam Telugu
1972 Raja Haridass Tamil
1972 Shakthi Leelai Guruji Tamil
1972 Ganga Gauri Tamil
1972 Inti Kodalu Telugu
1973 Vishali Telugu
1973 Sampoorna Ramayan Vashisht Muni
1973 Desoddharakulu Telugu
1973 Pattikaattu Ponnaiya Tamil
1973 Panjaramlo Pasipapa
1973 Ganga Gowri
1973 Puttinillu Mettinillu Telugu
1974 Lav Kush Valmiki
1974 Sivagamiyin Selvan Church Father Tamil
1974 Inti Kodalu
1976 Tu Hi Ram Tu Hi Krishna
1976 Kula Gowravam Tamil
1976 Ennai Pol Oruvan Sundaramoorthy's Father Tamil (final film role)
Composer and play back singer
Year Title Song
1938 Gruhalakshmi Lendu Bharata Veerulara
1953 Gumasta Oyi Parugekkadikoyi
1953 Prapancham Anta Kooleelam Manamanta Kooleelam, Premasudha Sarasilo Hamsalamai
1953 Sangham Jati Bhedam Samasipoda
1954 Maa Gopi Sanubhoothiye Leda Jagatini, Amma Krishnamma Apacharamemitamma
1956 Bhakta Markandeya Om Namashivaya, Jaya Jaya Shankara Sambasadashiva
1956 Naga Panchami Sambho Mahadeva
1956 Muddu Bidda Itulela Chesavaya O Devadeva
1956 Tenali Ramakrishna Gandupilli Menu Marichi
1956 Tenali Ramakrishna "Putrile Pambirukkum...Kottaiyile Oru Kaalatthile"
1957 Nala Damayanti Ghorambaina Daavagni Keelakerayai
1957 Panduranga Mahatyam Jaya Jaya Gokula Bala, Sannuti Seyave Manasa
1962 Swarnamanjari Madhuramaina Guru Deevena
1967 Maa Vadina Suthudilu Peeda Mandiramu (poem)
1967 Poola Rangadu Chillara Rallaku Mokkutu Unte Chedipoduvura
Playback singer
Director (partial filmography)
Producer (partial filmography)
Writer (partial filmography)

References

  1. ^ a b c Muthiah, S. (23 May 2010). "Madras miscellany". The Hindu. ISSN 0971-751X. Retrieved 7 August 2022.
  2. ^ "Paul Muni of India – Chittoor V.Nagayya". Bharatjanani.com. 6 May 2011. Archived from the original on 26 March 2012. Retrieved 21 September 2011.
  3. ^ "Acting Mentor". The New Indian Express.
  4. ^ Autobiography – Chittor V. Nagaiah, RK Books, Hyderabad, 2004.
  5. ^ Umashanker, K. (9 September 2014). "Mahati Kalakshetram to retain Chittoor Nagaiah's name". The Hindu.
  6. ^ Amazon / Books / Indian actor Chittoor V. Nagaiah: A Monograph, by K. N. T. Sastry (Author)
  7. ^ "Chittoor Nagaiah statue to be installed in Tirupati". The Hindu. 18 July 2006.
  8. ^ "Chittoor Nagaiah statue to be installed in Tirupati". The Hindu. 18 July 2006.
  9. ^ The Hindu : A revolutionary filmmaker
  10. ^ Vishwamohini (1940) - IMDb
  11. ^ entertaianment.oneindia.in/celebs/lakshmi/biography.html
  12. ^ "Chittoor Nagaiah statue to be installed in Tirupati". The Hindu. Chennai, India. 18 July 2006. Archived from the original on 5 August 2011.
  13. ^ Autobiography – Chittor V. Nagaiah, RK Books, Hyderabad, 2004.
  14. ^ "Chittoor V. Nagaiah – A Monograph". Archived from the original on 1 January 2019. Retrieved 20 April 2013.
  15. ^ "Nagaiah – noble, humble and kind-hearted". The Hindu. Chennai, India. 8 April 2005. Archived from the original on 25 November 2005.
  16. ^ Chittoor V. Nagaiah: A Monograph