(Last Updated on : 06-04-2012)
K. Hirannayya is a theatre personality from Karnataka and is remembered by all and sundry. The tradition of stage humour initiated by the artists of the Palace Company and developed by veterans like Krishnamoorthirao, K. Seetaramashastri of Hulimane, K. C. Chickka Jettappa and Veeranna was in a way perfected by K. Hirannayya, one of the most witty and intelligent actors of Karnataka
. He is better known for his contribution in the theatre in the genre of humour.
Life in Theatre for K. Hirannayya
From the times of the jester and farces, the stage humour had become a part of the play at the hands of Jettappa and Veeranna. Hirannayya caught the trend, shaped and sharpened the stage-humour into a potent double edged weapon, and couched it in the theme of the play itself. Humour almost became satire in his hands, with a lesson in it. The jester did not remain a secluded individual in Hirannayya's plays, but popped up his head in different garbs like a clever Brahmin (in Basaveswara), a learned cook ( in Panganama) a henpecked husband (in Makmal Topi), an ingenuous pimp ( Najukayya in Devadasi), or even as a determined Sastri in the play Ecchama Nayaka. Hirannayya's strong point was in the very angle from which he looked at even profound things.
Humourist in K. Hirannayya
Humour became the bed-rock on which his edifice of morals and social philosophy came to be erected. It may be said that he was one of the most prominent of professional playwrights who wrote social satires in which humour was elevated to an intellectual status. His humour gave both a hearty laugh as also a serious thought and drove deep many a home truth. He started from where Peer had left, and continued to serve and shape the popular taste by establishing the social play on the professional stage. He wrote and acted it out both for the pleasure and profit of the society. He played pranks with the society, mocked at it and even insulted it, but the society loved him all the more, and looked at itself with a laugh. Hirannayya passed away in his mid forties, while on the stage, during a performance at Coorg a few months ago. With him the theatre lost one of its illustrious luminaries.