Sugith Varughese (born 1958) is a Canadian writer, director and actor. His parents are ethnic Syrian orthodox Christians from the Indian state of Kerala.
|Born||1958 (age 59–60)
Cochin, Kerala, India
|Occupation||Writer, director, actor|
Born in Cochin, Kerala, India into a Syrian Christian family ("Varughese," also sometimes spelled "Varghese" and "Verghese" and variously pronounced, is Malayalam for "George"), he immigrated to Saskatoon, Saskatchewan as a child when his neurosurgeon father obtained a professional appointment there. His family's native language is Malayalam; having grown up in anglophone western Canada he naturally speaks English with a Canadian accent but from time to time affects an assortment of South Asian accents when playing dramatic roles that call for them.
Sugith Varughese was raised in Saskatoon, began university studies at the University of Saskatchewan in Saskatoon with a double major in pre-medicine and drama, and continued on to an undergraduate degree in drama at the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis and a Master of Fine Arts at York University in Toronto. He went on to write, act in and direct film and television productions in Canada and the USA. As a director, he has been nominated for and won several Canadian film and television and international film festival awards. He holds a black belt in karate.
His credits include the following.
Film and TelevisionEdit
- As a film and television actor, Varughese has more than 80 credits including “Orphan”, "Solar Attack" (as the character Patel), and “Mission to Mars.” Other television credits include “Suits”, “The Strain” and “Degrassi: The Next Generation”. He was a series regular in the comedy CBC-TV’s “An American in Canada” aka “Frostbite” in Australia (Gemini nomination for Best Ensemble Performance) and played recurring characters in Omni TV’s nighttime soap “Metropia”, CBC-TV’s “Little Mosque on the Prairie”, season one of “The Girlfriend Experience” on Starz and “Kim's Convenience” on CBC-TV. He starred in “Home on the Range” for CBC-TV which won a gold prize for best TV pilot at the Houston Film Festival. He received an ACTRA Award nomination for his very first television role in the TV movie “Best of Both Worlds” for CBC-TV.
As a stage actor:
- "Little Pretty and the Exceptional" (Factory Theatre) [Dora award nomination for Outstanding Performance-male],
- "The Postman" (Panamania) [also co-writer],
- "The Container" (Summerworks),
- "The Post Office" (Pleiades Theatre)
- "Tideline" (Factory Theatre)
- "Bhopal" (Cahoots Theatre) and
- "Indian Ink" (CanStage/National Arts Centre).
- as playwright "The Postman" (co-writer, Panamania) and "Entitlement" (Summerworks)
Film and TelevisionEdit
- As scriptwriter: “The Girl Who Hated Books”; “Mind Me Good Now”; “Tongue Tied”; “The Blobheads”; “Roses Sing on New Snow”; “Lost Worlds: Life in the Balance”; “Blue Murder”;“Christopher, Please Clean Up Your Room!”; “Talespinners Collection I”; “The Magic of Anansi”; “Lights for Gita”; “From Far Away”; “Groundling Marsh”; “On My Mind”; “Mela's Lunch”; “Kumar and Mr. Jones”; “Mount Royal”; “Best of Both Worlds”; “Fraggle Rock” and "Entry Denied," a CBC radio play detailing the unsuccessful attempt by 376 Punjabi immigrants aboard the Komagata Maru to land in Vancouver in 1914 and the Canadian government's turning them back to India.
- As scriptwriter: “Talespinners Collection 2” (NFB); “The Blobheads” (YTV); “Lost Worlds: Life in the Balance (IMAX documentary); “Blue Murder” (Global TV); “On My Mind” (TVOntario); “Mela’s Lunch” (NFB); “Kumar and Mr. Jones” (Canadian Film Centre;, “Mount Royal “ (CTV); “Best of Both Worlds” (CBC TV);“Fraggle Rock” (Jim Henson Company); as well as “In the Mountains”, a radio adaptation from Rohinton Mistry’s novel, “A Fine Balance”
Vaurghese has been nominated for a Writers Guild of Canada award five times and won a Writers Guild of Canada award for “Talespinners Collection 2” (NFB). He received a Gemini Award nomination for writing “The Secret Life of Goldfish”. He was a finalist for an ACTRA Award for writing “Best of Both Worlds.” He won the first York Trillium Award – Most Promising Writer, Television from the Academy of Canadian Cinema and Television.
- “Tongue Tied” (independent comedy short)
- “On My Mind” (half hour children’s television series for TVOntario)
- “Mela’s Lunch” (National Film Board of Canada)
- “Kumar and Mr. Jones” (Canadian Film Centre) – awarded Best Director, Atlantic Film Festival
- Neither the famous Dr Abraham Verghese nor the American stand-up comedian Paul Varghese, both also of Malayali Syrian Christian backgrounds, is necessarily any relation of Sugith Varughese: Malayali Syrian-Orthodox Christians do not have public family names (they have "house" names) and their putative surnames are simply their fathers' Christian names.
- Aseem Chhabra, "I Didn't Want To Be Invisible." Rediff.com, 18 May 2001. Retrieved 28 September 2007.
- Paul Lima, “The Writer As Warrior: Sugith Varughese,” Writers Guild of Canada: The W Files. Retrieved 29 September 2007.
- Internet Movie Database: Sujith Varoghese. Retrieved 29 September 2007.
- Writing at the Intersection: The Diaspora Crosswalk. Diaspora Dialogues. Retrieved 29 September 2007.
- Best Prices.com. "Where Is Here? : A CBC Radio Drama Anthology". Retrieved 29 September 2007.