You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

M.S. Viswanathan, Indian Film Composer, Dies at 88

Indian film composer M.S. Viswanathan, who composed tunes for hundreds of Tamil and Malayalam pics, died July 14 in Chennai, India, at age 88.

Partnering with T.K. Ramamoorthy, Viswanathan composed songs for such classics as “Paasamalar” “Server Sundaram,”  “Ayirathil oruvan” and “Enga veetu pillai.” After 1965 he started working on his own, although the two partnered on an unsuccessful film in 1996.

Maniyanga Subramanian Viswanathan was a child prodigy whose life was nearly cut short when his poverty-stricken mother decided to end both their lives after his father died. However, his grandfather stepped in and stopped the attempt, Viswanathan told a biographer.

He learned music by listening in at local maestro Neelakanta Bhagavathar’s lessons. Taken under the latter’s wing, Viswanathan gave his first singing concert at age 13 in Kannanur, Kerala. He had worked as a child actor and later at odd jobs at Jupiter Studios.

His big break came with composing music for “Jenova,” starring M.G. Ramachandran, the Tamil matinee idol. After teaming with top lyricists of the day like Kannadasan, Viswanathan composed for films of all the leading stars, who, besides Ramachandran, included Sivaji Ganesan, Gemini Ganesan (no relation) and Nagesh.

While the bulk of his composing was for Tamil helmers, he also worked with the top directors of the time in Kannada, Telugu and Malayalam films including C.V. Sridhar, K. Balachander, K.S. Gopalakrishnan, K.S. Prakash Rao, N.T. Rama Rao, Visu, Mouli and Komal Swaminathan.

Such tunes as “Yezhu Swarngalukkul Ethanai Padal” in “Apoorva ragangal” won singer Vani Jairam the National Award. He also composed “Neerarum Kadalodutha,” which became the state anthem for Tamil Nadu.

Among later composers who worked with Viswanathan are Illayaraja and A.R. Rahman.

Viswanathan is survived by four sons and three daughters. His wife preceded him in death.

 

 

 

 

 

 

More Film

  • Busan: ‘Gasoline’ fills up at Project

    Busan: ‘Gasoline’ Fills up at Project Market Awards

    Indian film composer M.S. Viswanathan, who composed tunes for hundreds of Tamil and Malayalam pics, died July 14 in Chennai, India, at age 88. Partnering with T.K. Ramamoorthy, Viswanathan composed songs for such classics as “Paasamalar” “Server Sundaram,”  “Ayirathil oruvan” and “Enga veetu pillai.” After 1965 he started working on his own, although the two […]

  • BjorkPolar Music Talk, Biograf Scandia, Stockholm,

    Bjork Elaborates on Harassment: Danish Director ‘Stroked Me,’ Made ‘Graphic Sexual Offers’

    Indian film composer M.S. Viswanathan, who composed tunes for hundreds of Tamil and Malayalam pics, died July 14 in Chennai, India, at age 88. Partnering with T.K. Ramamoorthy, Viswanathan composed songs for such classics as “Paasamalar” “Server Sundaram,”  “Ayirathil oruvan” and “Enga veetu pillai.” After 1965 he started working on his own, although the two […]

  • Nora Johnson Obit Dead

    Nora Johnson, Writer of 'The World of Henry Orient,' Dies at 84

    Indian film composer M.S. Viswanathan, who composed tunes for hundreds of Tamil and Malayalam pics, died July 14 in Chennai, India, at age 88. Partnering with T.K. Ramamoorthy, Viswanathan composed songs for such classics as “Paasamalar” “Server Sundaram,”  “Ayirathil oruvan” and “Enga veetu pillai.” After 1965 he started working on his own, although the two […]

  • Jack Gao: Wanda, Legendary Departure Was

    What Prompted Jack Gao's Departure From Wanda and Legendary?

    Indian film composer M.S. Viswanathan, who composed tunes for hundreds of Tamil and Malayalam pics, died July 14 in Chennai, India, at age 88. Partnering with T.K. Ramamoorthy, Viswanathan composed songs for such classics as “Paasamalar” “Server Sundaram,”  “Ayirathil oruvan” and “Enga veetu pillai.” After 1965 he started working on his own, although the two […]

  • Angelina Jolie gwyneth paltrow Harvey Weinstein

    Harvey Weinstein Firestorm Marks an Inflection Point for Entertainment

    Indian film composer M.S. Viswanathan, who composed tunes for hundreds of Tamil and Malayalam pics, died July 14 in Chennai, India, at age 88. Partnering with T.K. Ramamoorthy, Viswanathan composed songs for such classics as “Paasamalar” “Server Sundaram,”  “Ayirathil oruvan” and “Enga veetu pillai.” After 1965 he started working on his own, although the two […]

  • POLAND OUTMandatory Credit: Photo by Bartlomiej

    European Filmmakers and Producers Protest Sacking of Polish Film Institute Director

    Indian film composer M.S. Viswanathan, who composed tunes for hundreds of Tamil and Malayalam pics, died July 14 in Chennai, India, at age 88. Partnering with T.K. Ramamoorthy, Viswanathan composed songs for such classics as “Paasamalar” “Server Sundaram,”  “Ayirathil oruvan” and “Enga veetu pillai.” After 1965 he started working on his own, although the two […]

  • Tippi Hedren Alfred Hitchcock Sexual Harassment

    Casting-Couch Tactics Plagued Hollywood Long Before Harvey Weinstein

    Indian film composer M.S. Viswanathan, who composed tunes for hundreds of Tamil and Malayalam pics, died July 14 in Chennai, India, at age 88. Partnering with T.K. Ramamoorthy, Viswanathan composed songs for such classics as “Paasamalar” “Server Sundaram,”  “Ayirathil oruvan” and “Enga veetu pillai.” After 1965 he started working on his own, although the two […]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content