Mangaluru, May 28, 2017: Senior Yakshagana artiste Surikumeri K. Govinda Bhat, 79, has been chosen for the Kendra Sangeet Natak Akademi Award for 2016. The award carries a purse of Rs.1 lakh, besides a Tamrapatra and Angavastram. He is among the nine artistes chosen for the award in theatre category.
Mr. Bhat has 67 years of experience in Yakshagana. He is presently an artiste with Dharmasthala Manjunatheswara Yakshagana Mandali and has been serving with it since 50 years.
Mr. Bhat played the character of Vajra Bahu in Kamsa Vivaha prasanga in Dharmasthala on Saturday. It was the last show of the mela for the current touring season.
Born at Kukkemane near Vitla on March 22, 1936, he has now shifted to Safalapura near Heddur in Thirthahalli taluk. Mr. Bhat who started his career in Thenku Thittu school of Yakshagana in 1951 continues as a professional artiste now in Dharmasthala mela. His characters such as Kaurava, Karthaveerya, Karna, Dasaratha, Bheeshma and Indrajit were still worth remembering.