K. A. Thangavelu

Karaikal Arunachalam Thangavelu (15 January 1917 – 28 September 1994) popularly known as "Danaal Thangavelu", was an Indian film actor and comedian popular in the 1950s to 1970s. Not known for physical, acrobatic comedy like his contemporaries J. P. Chandrababu and Nagesh, Thangavelu's humor is recognised for his impeccable timing in verbal agility and the characteristic twang of his delivery. He exclusively acted in Tamil films.

K. A. Thangavelu
K. A. Thangavelu.jpg
Born
Karaikal Arunachalam Thangavelu[1]

(1917-01-15)15 January 1917
Died28 September 1994(1994-09-28) (aged 77)
Other namesDanaal Thangavelu
OccupationActor, comedian
Years active1936; 1951–1994
Spouse(s)Rajamani (m. 1943)
M. Saroja (m.1959–1994; until his death)
Children3

Early lifeEdit

Thangavelu was born on 15 January 1917,[2] in Karaikal, but shifted at an early age to Tirumalairayanpattinam. He was one of three sons of Arunachalam and Karumammal. Due to Arunachalam's alcoholism, the family struggled for food everyday. Karumammal died when Thangavelu was six years old, and Arunachalam remarried; Thangavelu's stepmother often abused him.[1] Arunachalam left for Singapore to find better employment and Thangavelu was sent to live with his relatives, but they too abused and ill-treated him.[3] As a child, Thangavelu was a music and theatre fan, often sneaking into halls to watch plays. He eventually joined the Rajambal Company troupe, and was taught acting and mentored originally by Yedhartham Ponnuswamy Pillai, and later by M. Kandaswamy Mudaliar.[1]

CareerEdit

Thangavelu spent nine years at Rajambal Company, and after Kandaswamy Mudaliar shifted to the film industry, he too did the same, debuting with a minor, uncredited role in Sathi Leelavathi (1936). Due to lack of success, Thangavelu quit films and survived on alms at a Murugan temple near Kanchipuram until actor M. M. Marappa saw his plight and brought him back into the acting field, this time in theatre. As a result, Thangavelu became more financially stable, and his father also returned to live with him. After a long sabbatical from films, Thangavelu returned to the field in 1951 with Manamagal; director N. S. Krishnan cast him after having already seen and liking his several stage performances. He followed it with a comical role in Singari the same year, through which he got the prefix "Danaal" after the often repeated word of his character. Films like Ponvayal and Panam Paduthum Padu (both released in 1954) were instrumental in establishing Thangavelu as a comedian.[1] Throughout his career, Thangavelu acted only in Tamil films.[3] He had won Tamil Nadu government's Kalaimamani in 1968 and Kalaivanar award in 1989.[4]

Personal lifeEdit

Thangavelu was originally married to Rajamani.[3] He later married actress M. Saroja who was his pair in more than 50 films. Despite their age difference, they loved and married in Madurai Murugan temple during the 100th day celebration of their film Kalyana Parisu.[5]

DeathEdit

Thangavelu died on 28 September 1994 at his house in Chennai, Tamil Nadu.[3]

FilmographyEdit

Year Film Role Ref.
1936 Sathi Leelavathi [6]
1951 Manamagal
Singari
1952 Amarakavi
Kaliyugam
Panam
1953 Anbu
Thirumbi Paar
Panakkari
1954 Illara Jothi
Suham Engei
Nanban
Panam Paduthum Padu
Ponvayal Esraj [7]
Pona Machchan Thirumbi Vanthan
Vilayattu Bommai
Vaira Maalai
1955 Ulagam Palavitham
Ellam Inba Mayam
Kathanayaki
Gulebakavali
Koteeswaran
Gomathiyin Kaadhalan
Chella Pillai
Maheswari
Mangaiyar Thilakam
Methavikal
Missiamma
1956 Rambaiyin Kaadhal
Alibabavum 40 Thirudargalum Gulam [8]
Amara Deepam
Kalam Maripochchu
Kudumba Vilakku
Nalla Veedu
Naga Panchami
Marma Veeran
Mathar Kula Manikkam
1957 Alavudinum Arbutha Vilakkum
Ambikapathi
Engal Veettu Mahalakshmi
Karpukkarasi
Chakravarthi Thirumagal
Soubakyavathi
Neelamalai Thirudan
Bhaktha Markandeya
Baagyavathi
Mallika
Maya Bazaar
Vanangamudi
1958 Uthama Puthiran
Kadan Vaangi Kalyaanam
Kanniyin Sabatham
Kaathavarayan
Senjulakshmi
Neelavukku Niranja Manasu
Boologa Rambai
Manamulla Maruthaaram
Mangalya Bhagyam
Vanji Kottai Valipan
1959 Kalyana Parisu
Thaai Magalukku Kattiya Thaali
Naan Sollum Ragasiyam
Manjal Mahimai
1960 Adutha Veettu Penn Singer [9]
Anbirkoor Anni
Irumbu Thirai
Kadavulin Kuzhandhai
Kaithi Kannayiram
Kairasi Madhu [10]
Thangam Manasu Thangam
Thangarathinam
Deivapiravi
Naan Kanda Sorgam Sundar [11]
Pattaliyin Vetri
Pudhiya Pathai
Meenda Sorgam
1961 Arasilangkumari
Thirudathe
Panithirai
Pasamalar
Then Nilavu
1965 Enga Veetu Pillai
1967 Uyir Mel Aasai
Rajathi
1968 Galatta Kalyanam Dharmalingam
Thillana Mohanambal
1969 Nam Naadu
1970 Vietnam Veedu
1972 Amman Arul
1974 Kalyanamam Kalyanam
1974 Anbu Thangai
1981 Karaiyellam Shenbagapoo Head constable
1982 Krodham
1987 Manaivi Ready Thangappan
1989 Avathellam Pennale Naidu
1994 Periya Marudhu Vaithiyar

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b c d Raman, Mohan V. (24 September 2016). "King of comedy". The Hindu. Archived from the original on 12 December 2018. Retrieved 9 February 2020.
  2. ^ Kantha, Sachi Sri (19 December 2017). "MGR Remembered – Part 41 – Ilankai Tamil Sangam". Ilankai Tamil Sangam. Archived from the original on 24 December 2017. Retrieved 9 February 2020.
  3. ^ a b c d Majordasan. "Potpourri of titbits about cinema – Thangavelu". Kalyanamalai. Archived from the original on 29 October 2016. Retrieved 9 February 2020.
  4. ^ "K. A. Thangavelu dead". The Indian Express. 29 September 1994. p. 1.
  5. ^ Kesavan, N. (26 June 2016). "Comediennes who made Tamil cinema bright". The Hindu. Archived from the original on 27 February 2018. Retrieved 9 February 2020.
  6. ^ Rajanayaham, R. P. (13 November 2015). "நினைவுகளின் சிறகுகள்: கே.ஏ. தங்கவேலு – அண்ணே என்னைச் சுடப்போறாங்க!" [Wings of memories: K. A. Thangavelu – My big brother is going to shoot me!]. The Hindu (Tamil). Archived from the original on 12 November 2019. Retrieved 9 February 2020.
  7. ^ Guy, Randor (14 January 2012). "Ponvayal 1954". The Hindu. Archived from the original on 9 February 2020. Retrieved 9 February 2020.
  8. ^ அலிபாபாவும் 40 திருடர்களும் [Alibaba and the Forty Thieves] (songbook) (in Tamil). Modern Theatres. c. 1956. Archived from the original on 1 August 2020. Alt URL
  9. ^ Guy, Randor (7 September 2013). "Adutha Veettu Penn 1960". The Hindu. Archived from the original on 8 September 2013. Retrieved 7 September 2013.
  10. ^ வாசு பிலிம்ஸ் கைராசி (பாட்டுப் புத்தகம்) (in Tamil). Chennai: Sri Kamakoti Printers, Moor Road, Chennai-1. 1960. Archived from the original on 23 June 2019. Retrieved 9 February 2020.
  11. ^ Guy, Randor (7 February 2015). "Naan Kanda Sorgam 1960". The Hindu. Archived from the original on 5 March 2017. Retrieved 9 February 2020.

External linksEdit