U. R. Jeevarathnam

  (Redirected from U. R. Jeevarathinam)

U. R. Jeevarathnam (Tamil: யூ. ஆர். ஜீவரத்தினம்) was a famous Tamil actress, singer, producer and playback singer. Most of her works are in Telugu and Tamil languages.

U. R. Jeevarathnam
யூ. ஆர். ஜீவரத்தினம்
U. R. Jeevarathnam in 1948 Tamil film Sri Andal
Unjalur R. Jeevarathnam

Died26 July 2000
Mandaveli, Chennai, India
Years active1937  – 1956
Spouse(s)T. S. Venkataswami

Early lifeEdit

Born in Unjalur, Erode, Madras Presidency in British India to Subramaniam and Kunjammaal. She was very much interested in music right from the time of her school days and could sing very well also. K. S. Angamuthu, a very popular comedian of that time helped her to join the Krishna Drama Company at the age of 9. She had tutelage of carnatic music from Kailasa Bhagavathar and Kunnakkudi Venkatrama Iyer. She used to watch the acting style of everyone with attention.


When Salem Modern Theatres was founded, she joined as an artiste. She made her debut through the Modern Theatres maiden film Sathi Ahalya in 1937 at the age of ten. She appeared as a celestial lady from the heaven. She appeared in other films till 1941 when was offered a main role in Bhaktha Gowri. She was a good singer and the song 'Theruvil varaandi' was a testimony to her mellifluous voice.

She had acted in films such as Poompavai, Abhimanyu, Bhojan and Devakanya. In the film Kannagi she had acted as Kaunthi Adigal (An old Jain nun in the Tamil epic Silapathikaram). She was awarded the title Isai Kuyil (Nightingale Of Music) by Swami Dhinakar at the 100th day function of Kannagi held at Thiruvarur. She appeared in many Modern Theatres productions.

After marriage, they started a film production company Mercury Films. The first production was Pona Machan Thirumbi Vanthaan (1954) with Sriram and T. D. Kusalakumari in the lead roles. The film earned a moderate profit. The second production was Vaazhvile Oru Naal (1956) with Sivaji Ganesan and G. Varalakshmi in the lead roles.

The third attempt was a film titled, Sirikkum Silai with MGR with the expectation of recovering the money that were lost in their previous films, but the production had to be given up within a few days of shooting. They tried a fourth attempt in the film Adichathu Yoham with Ravichandran which unfortunately had also to be shelved in the middle. They incurred heavy losses due to these two films.

She was also a playback singer. She sang for N. S. Saroja in Kannagi (1942), T. D. Kusalakumari in Pona Machan Thirumbi Vanthaan (1954) and G. Varalakshmi in Vaazhvile Oru Naal (1956).

Personal lifeEdit

She married T. S. Venkataswami who was the manager of Central Studios. After her marriage she said bid adieu to the films but she was active in stage dramas. The couple had four daughters and one son, four granddaughters and two grandsons. Her husband died on 7 April 1971. Jeevarathnam died on 26 July 2000 when she was living at Mandaveli, Chennai. Her body was cremated at her native place Unjalur. The entire film industry paid its last respects to this veteran artiste. Her son Vetrivel and his wife Jothi Paappammaa have planned to publish a book on Jeevarathnam’s biography. Jeevarathnam’s family happily recalls the marriage of Vetrivel which was attended by the then chief minister MGR and V. N. Janaki. MGR handed over the sacred thaali to Vetrivel and blessed the couple.



Year Film Language Co-Stars Banner
1937 Sathi Ahalya Tamil K. Thavamani Devi, S. D. Subbaiah Modern Theatres
1937 Padmajothi Tamil T. M. Sankaran, M. S. Muthukrishnan Modern Theatres
1938 Thayumanavar Tamil M. M. Dandapani Desikar, M. S. Devasena Modern Theatres
1939 Santhana Devan Tamil M. R. Radha, G. M. Basheer Modern Theatres
1940 Raja Yogam Tamil K. Nadarajan, T. K. Sampangki Modern Theatres
1940 Sathi Mahanantha Tamil C. V. V. Panthulu, P. B. Rangachari Modern Theatres
1940 Uthama Puthiran Tamil P. U. Chinnappa Modern Theatres
1940 Sathyavaani Tamil M. R. Radha, K. L. V. Vasantha Modern Theatres
1940 Parasuramar Tamil Serukalathur Sama, K. L. V. Vasantha Angel Films
1941 Bhaktha Gowri Tamil S. D. Subbaiah Bagavathar Modern Theatres
1942 Kannagi Tamil P. U. Chinnappa, P. Kannamba Jupiter Pictures
1943 Arundhathi Tamil C. Honnappa Bhagavathar Modern Theatres
1943 Devakanya Tamil C. Honnappa Bhagavathar Padma Pictures
1944 Poompaavai Tamil K. R. Ramaswamy Leo Films
1944 Jagathalaprathapan Tamil P. U. Chinnappa Pakshiraja Films
1944 Rajarajeshwari Tamil C. Honnappa Bhagavathar Modern Theatres
1945 En Magan Tamil N. Krishnamurthi Central Studios
1946 Valmiki Tamil C. Honnappa Bhagavathar Central Studios
1946 Sri Murugan Tamil C. Honnappa Bhagavathar, MGR Jupiter Pictures
1948 Sri Aandal Tamil P. S. Govindan, V. A. Chellappa Salem Surya Films
1948 Abhimanyu Tamil S. M. Kumaresan, MGR Jupiter Pictures

Playback singerEdit

Year Film Song Language Actor Co-Singer Music Banner
1942 Kannagi Tamil M. S. Saroja S. V. Venkatraman Jupiter Pictures
1954 Pona Machaan Thirumbi Vandhan Yaar Inge Maarthavandi Tamil T. D. Kusalakumari C. N. Pandurangan Mercury Pictures
Idhayam Ennum Koyil Thannil T. D. Kusalakumari A. M. Rajah
1955 Nam Kuzhandai Jigu Jigu Digiri Nambaadhe Tamil M. D. Parthasarathy Windsor Productions
1956 Vaazhvile Oru Naal Thendrale Vaaraayo Inba Sugam Thaaraayo Tamil G. Varalakshmi T. M. Soundararajan T. G. Lingappa Mercury Pictures



  • Article on U. R. Jeevarathnam
  • Randor Guy (January 22, 2010). "Bhaktha Gowri 1941". The Hindu.
  • U. R. Jeevarathnam in Tamil Wikipedia
  • Watch U. R. Jeevarathnam sings Aadhi Param Porule from Santhanathevan (1939) on YouTube
  • Watch U. R. Jeevarathnam sings Kariyamadhile from Santhanathevan (1939) on YouTube