Mayavaram Krishnasamy Thyagaraja Bhagavathar
Born: 1 March 1910
Died: 1 November 1959
- He also called M.K.T., was an Indian actor, producer, and Carnatic music singer.
- He is considered to be one of the most successful actors in Tamil cinema ever and the first superstar of Tamil cinema.
- He started his career as a classical singer and stage artist in the late 1920s.
- In 1934, he made his début in films with the movie Pavalakkodi which turned out to be a hit.
- From 1934 to 1959, he acted in 14 films of which 7 were box-office hits.
- His 1944 film Haridas ran for three consecutive years at Broadway Theatre, Madras and created the record for the longest continuous run at a single theatre.
- He was arrested in 1944 as one of the main suspects in the Lakshmikanthan Murder Case and spent three years in prison before being released in 1947 after a privy council verdict came in his favour.
- His career declined after his arrest and though he did continue to act in Tamil films after his release from prison, none of them did well.
- He died of diabetes at the age of 49 on 1 November 1959.
- He was acclaimed for his powerful, melodious voice and the ease with which he could sing high pitch notes.
- Critics and film historians acknowledge Bhagavathar as the “first superstar of Tamil cinema”.
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March 1, 2020