Veteran folk artiste, actor-singer Paravai Muniyamma passes away
The singer shot to fame in cinema with the Singam Pola number from Vikram-Dharani's Dhool
Paravai Muniyamma, veteran folk artiste and actor-playback singer, breathed her last at her residence in Madurai in the early hours of Sunday owing to age-related health ailments. She was 83.
The singer who shot to fame in cinema with the iconic Singam pola number from Dhool (2003) had been battling illnesses for a few years now.
Muniyamma, who hails from the village of Paravai in Madurai, began her singing career by performing in temple functions and slowly graduated to headlining the international circuit under the aegis of popular light music troupe, Lakshman Shruthi.
Though it was music director Vidyasagar who introduced Muniyamma to films, she was approached by many composers even before that, including AR Rahman for Muthu.
Not only an accomplished singer, Muniyamma also made her acting debut in Dhool, playing Vikram's grandmother. She went on to act in multiple films like Thoranai, Kovil, Thamizh Padam, Maan Karate, Venghai, and Veeram. Muniyamma also enjoyed a stint in television, where she hosted a cooking show that not only highlighted the traditional food of Tamil Nadu, but also folk music.
A recipient of the prestigious Kalaimamani award from the State government, Muniyamma believed in the power of folk music and strived to explore the genre and take it places.
Lately, Muniyamma battled her way out of a critical phase where she not only fought health complications but also rumours of her death. Previously, owing to her ill health and financial condition, then Tamil Nadu chief minister, Late J Jayalalithaa had given Rs 6 lakhs as fixed deposit and a monthly stipend of Rs 6000. Further, Muniyamma requested the government to continue giving the stipend to her son in the case of her death.
Muniyamma is survived by her son. Her last rites are expected to happen later today in Madurai.