N. S. Krishnan

Nagercoil Sudalaimuthu Krishnan, popularly known as Kalaivanar (lit.'Lover of arts') and also as NSK, was an Indian actor, comedian, theatre artist, playback singer and writer in the early stages of the Tamil film industry – in the 1940s and 1950s. He is considered as the "Charlie Chaplin of India."[1]

N. S. Krishnan
N. S. Krishnan.jpg
Born(1908-11-29)29 November 1908
Died30 August 1957(1957-08-30) (aged 48)
Years active1935–1957
Spouse(s)Nagammal (m.1931)
T. A. Madhuram (m.1939)
ChildrenKolappan (son)
Parent(s)Father : Sudalaimuthu
Mother : Esakki

Born in Ozhuginachery, Nagercoil, in the princely state of Travancore, India on 29 November 1908, his stage and cine-screen comedy performances were unique and always carried a message for the people. "Kalaivanar" N. S. Krishnan died at the age of 48, on 30 August 1957.

Personal lifeEdit

He was married to actress T. A. Madhuram. His grandson NSK Rajan has acted in the film Nagareega Komaali (2006).[2][3] His granddaughters Anu Vardhan and Ramya NSK are working as costume designer and playback singer in the film industry respectively.[4][5]


N.S. Krishnan had been undergoing treatment for hepatitis since 12 August 1957. He died at the General Hospital, Madras on 30 August 1957 following complications of the disease.[6]


  • The leading Tamil Nadu politician and Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu 'Kalaignar' Karunanidhi, when asked once by a journalist (of the Tamil magazine Kumudham) about who the non-political hero in his life was, answered it was Kalaivanar. Karunanidhi knew him well and worked in some of his film projects.
  • Kalaivanar was an active member of the Dravidian Movement. Kalaivanar Arangam (or Kalaivanar Arts Centre) was named after him.[7] The building is one of the leading landmarks in the city of Chennai, the capital of Tamil Nadu. It now houses the Tamil Nadu Assembly.



  1. ^ ""The generous comic genius"". The Hindu. Archived from the original on 6 October 2013. Retrieved 5 October 2013.
  2. ^ "Stargazing". The Hindu. 17 February 2006. Archived from the original on 22 December 2016. Retrieved 15 June 2015.
  3. ^ "A rich lineage for them - Tamil News". 14 February 2006. Archived from the original on 27 December 2017. Retrieved 15 June 2015.
  4. ^ "Weaves of fortune". The Hindu. 6 December 2001. Archived from the original on 22 December 2016. Retrieved 15 June 2015.
  5. ^ Kamath, Sudhish (3 September 2012). "The MAESTro's MAGIC continues". The Hindu. Archived from the original on 21 December 2016. Retrieved 15 June 2015.
  6. ^ "dated August 31, 1957: N.S. Krishnan dead". The Hindu. 31 August 2007. ISSN 0971-751X. Archived from the original on 11 October 2020. Retrieved 30 August 2015.
  7. ^ Karthikeyan, Ajitha (26 November 2009). "Curtains down on landmark auditorium Kalaivanar Arangam". The Times of India. Archived from the original on 30 November 2009. Retrieved 12 May 2020.

External linksEdit