Eminent writer and Jnanpith Award winner U.R. Ananthamurthy shared a close bond with Rangayana, a prominent theatre repertory, in Mysore.
When there was a move by the State government to transfer Rangayana artistes to regional centres in Shimoga and Dharwad last year, Dr. Ananthamurthy had come in support of the artistes.
Dr. Ananthamurthy, who was in Mysore in January last, visited Rangayana, which was celebrating Bahuroopi National Theatre Festival and interacted with artistes, theatre personalities and journalists.
On that day, the eminent writer, who was all praise for the theatre repertory’s successful journey, favoured independent institution status for Rangayana and sought more powers to its director.
Describing Rangayana as a unique institution, he suggested that it be allowed to function independently and sought better pay and pension for artistes. When some powers of the Rangayana director were taken away, he advised the government to restore the director’s authority and suggested modernisation of the repertory on the occasion of its 25th anniversary.
Dr. Ananthamurthy had also suggested establishing a museum at Rangayana in commemoration of founder B.V. Karanth’s invaluable contribution to theatre. Notably, the government withdrew the transfer of some Rangayana artistes and also restored the powers of the director.
Rangayana Director H. Janardhana (Janni) said Dr. Ananthamurthy had a close connection with Rangayana. After B.V. Karanth, it was Dr. Ananthamurthy who was the biggest strength to the repertory. He played a key role in the repertory’s success, he said. “Dr. Ananthamurthy’s demise is a colossal loss to the literary and cultural world. He was a prominent voice for the cultural world. He used to identify talent and build confidence in them to excel. He was a guiding light,” Mr. Janni said.