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Updated: August 24, 2013 09:38 IST

50 glorious years of A.R. Srinivasan in Tamil theatre

R. Sujatha
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Theatre artist A.R. Srinivasan at his residence in T. Nagar Photo: R.Ragu
The Hindu Theatre artist A.R. Srinivasan at his residence in T. Nagar Photo: R.Ragu

A.R. Srinivasan, known as ARS, is in the 50th year of his acting career on stage. An urbane actor who has done a variety of roles, he has a fund of stories to share about drama in the city.

He grew up surrounded by dramatists and artists and admires the art form. As a boy, he watched the ‘singing’ stars K.B. Sundarambal and M.K. Thyagaraja Bhagavathar. “The best part about the early days of drama is Rama could walk in singing ‘Gopiyar konjum Ramana’ though if you apply logic you would know that the Krishna avatar came after the one of Rama,” he says.

ARS, who has been with the United Amateur Artists for most of his life, says he opted to remain a stage artist. According to him, acting can be described as exaggerated, subtle or non-acting but not overacting. “People say Sivaji (Ganesan) was melodramatic. But then the audience demanded it,” he says.

He belongs to a generation that set store by diction. “Playwrights paid attention to language. The dialogues for historical plays were lyrical, rhythmic. Such Tamil is rarely spoken these days,” he rues.

“There was a time when ‘houseful’ boards hung outside sabhas. It goes to show that though for us acting was a hobby, people enjoyed good plays and stories. MGR and Sivaji would preside over the silver jubilee shows of plays. They would finish their film shootings early to watch our plays. It thrilled us to perform before them,” he recalls.

His admiration for contemporaries is laced with the hope that someday he will get to see drama regain its full glory.

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Photos: www.thehindushutterbug.com

Mr. ARS is the Great Artist in the cine field and stage.He has acted with the matinee idols
like Kamal and Superstar.
He is a good age old friend of Nadigar Thilagam MGR !!
Very recently he got the Sahitya Academy Award offered by The President of India !

Best wishes !

from:  Ramamoorthy Venkatraman
Posted on: Aug 24, 2013 at 18:55 IST

Sivaji was acting regularly for 3 shifts in a day whereas MGR was acting very few films in a
year,had more time to spare for political meetings as well as,Sivaji also used to act 5 differant
styles for a particular scene and used to tell the directors to pickup whatever they wanted,So
Sivaji can not be blamed for melodramatic,MGR also acted with special application and each
and every film he followed Sivaji and brought those scenes in his films as well,Again when
we saw old Sivaji films those days we never analyse the technical properties,whereas now
when we see again films like Pasamalar,Alayamani,Pavamannippu,Karanan ,in one film he
acts after the song finished,through his eyes,we really cherish the acting talent of the legend
and realize how versatile he used to be,The walking scene in a song in Kandan karunai for
KVM ,BGM is the top of all for which the present day so called actors can not stand nearer
to Sivaji,Such is the power of the Great Sivaji,Gods Gift for him.

from:  A.M.Srinevasan
Posted on: Aug 24, 2013 at 14:11 IST
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