Prema Karanth

Prema Karanth

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Category: Art

Prema Karanth Profile

  • Name:
  • Prema Karanth
  • Father:
  • Devoji Rao
  • Mother:
  • Kamalamma
  • Spouse:
  • B. V. Karanth

Prema Karanth Biography

Prema Karanth is the first woman director of Kannada cinema. She is a multifaceted figure and a prominent theatre artist best known for the children's plays that she staged. She was the wife of B. V. Karanth, an iconic figure of south India, related to arts and cinema. She became the first woman director of Kannada when she directed, Phaniyamma based on a novel by M. K. Indira.

 

Prema Karanth was born in 1936 at Bhadravathi. She was born in a poor family. She lost her father at a younger age. Her mother Kamalamma was a TB patient and not allowed to touch her. She too died early. Thus she had a hard childhood. Prema’s childhood days were spent at Sidlaghatta in the Kolar district where she was brought up by her grandparents. After schooling, she started her career at St. Teresa's convent, Bangalore as a teacher. Though she was determined not to get married, she changed her opinion after meeting her future husband, B. V. Karanth. In 1958, they got married under Arya Samaj rites and moved to Varanasi. She joined Banaras Hindu University as a student while her husband moved to Delhi to join the National School of Drama.

 

Later she accompanied him and joined the Aurobindo Ashram as a teacher. She too joined the National School of Drama where she completed graduation in dramatics. After graduation, she worked with the NSD repertory for two years. As a dramatist, she directed children oriented plays like Heddayana, Daithya, Banda Banda Gunavantha and Giant Mama. All her plays were in Kannada language. She started a children's repertory named Benaka Makkala Kendra. She has also designed costumes for more than 120 plays.

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Updated: January 21, 2014

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