|Born||18 July 1941|
Madras, Madras Presidency, British India
|Died||24 January 2002 60) (aged|
|Genres||Film score, theatre|
|Occupation(s)||Composer, music director, instrumentalist|
|Spouse(s)||H. P. Geetha|
Upendra Kumar (18 July 1941 – 24 January 2002) was an Indian composer who predominantly worked in Kannada and Odia films. He was known for his strong association with Rajkumar and his family and scored some of his career best compositions for the films featuring Rajkumar and his sons. He had scored for 210 films including Tamil, Telugu, Malayalam and Tulu films. 
Kumar originally hailed from Digapahandi, a town in the present-day Odisha State of India.  He was born in 1941 in Madras (now Chennai) in British India to a Telugu-speaking brahmin family.  His father, Lakshman Swamy was an astrologer. Kumar studied up to seventh Grade and shifted towards music learning with the help of his uncle, Apparao. He underwent rigorous training in Hindustani classical, Western instrumental and Indian string instruments. He graduated with a bachelor's degree in Indian classical music, Odissi music and sitar from the Utkala College of Music and Dance. Upon completion of his graduation, he left for Madras looking for opportunities. 
Once in Madras, Kumar took music classes in vocals and the sitar. An impressed film director Y. R. Swamy, with his "teaching methodology and his flair for music", signed him to score for his 1966 film Katari Veera , which had Rajkumar playing the lead role. Two tracks from the soundtrack album, "Chengu Chengendu Haaruva" and "Haayaada Ee Sangama" became popular. 
As a composer, Kumar blended Odia folk music in Kannada film soundtrack. Songs from films for which he scored that became popular included Sipayi Ramu (1972), Premada Kanike (1976), Shankar Guru (1978), Dharmasere (1979), Ravichandra (1980), Kaamana Billu (1983), Ratha Sapthami (1986), Nanjundi Kalyana (1989), Hrudaya Haadithu (1991) and Jeevana Chaitra (1992). Kumar frequently collaborated with Rajkumar who playback-sung many songs for films that mostly starred himself, and picturised on him. Popular numbers of this combination included "Chinna Baalalli", "Love Me or Hate Me" and "Cheluveya Nota Chenna" from Shankar Guru, "Idhu Rama Mandira" from Ravichandra, "Indu Aananda" from Kaamana Billu, "Lakshmi Baaramma" and "Manavanaagi Huttidamele" from Jeevana Chaitra, "Naliyuthaa" from Hrudaya Haadithu and "Saptapadi Idu Saptapadi" from Saptapadi (1992). Other collaborations included with singers C. Aswath ("Negilahidida" from Kaamana Billu), Manjula Gururaj ("Olage Seridare Gundu" from Nanjundi Kalyana)  and S. P. Balasubrahmanyam, who also sang many non-film devotional songs composed by Kumar.  "Naadamaya" from Jeevana Chaitra fetched Rajkumar the National Film Award for Best Male Playback Singer.  Lyrics for most tracks of the Upendra Kumar–Rajkumar combination were written by Chi. Udayashankar. 
The mandolin and the sitar were prominently used in Kumar's instrumentation, and he was particularly fond of Kafi raga with melodies deriving from that scale. "Idu Yaaru Bareda Katheyo" from Premada Kanike was based on this raga.
Kumar won the Karnataka State Film Award for Best Music Director three times (for Nanjundi Kalyana, Hrudaya Haadithu and Jeevana Chaitra) before stopped composing for films in the mid- to late-1990s. His health deteriorated during this time and died in 2002 with the Kannada film Vishwamithra (2001) being his last work. Srikanth Srinivasa of Deccan Herald , in a tribute, wrote of Kumar's last days, "With the advent of new wave music director, Upendra Kumar was relegated to the background and found himself out of work and forgotten by the Kannada film industry. Besides, he has scored music for Dharma Devathe which was released recently. He has also scored music for Dr Rajkumar's private devotional albums." 
Alongside Kannada, Kumar notably worked also in Odia films and scored for more than 25 films. They included Dharitri (1972), Mana Akasha (1974), Punarmilana (1977),"Kavi Samrat Upendra Bhanja"(1978) and Alibha Daga (1980). His music became very popular in Odisha. A book titled Sajala Smruti was released in 2009 in memory of Kumar's work in Odia films. 
Kumar was married to H. P. Geetha, sister of Kannada film actress H. P. Saroja. 
Upendra Kumar died on 24 January 2002 of jaundice in Bangalore, aged 60.
|1966||Katari Veera||Debut film as a composer|
|1969||Ade Hrudaya Ade Mamathe|
|1971||Hennu Honnu Mannu|
|1975||Namma Oora Devaru|
|Nyaya Neethi Dharma|
|Praya Praya Praya|
|Nanjundi Kalyana||Karnataka State Film Award for Best Music Director|
|Raja Kempu Roja|
|1991||Lion Jagapathi Rao|
|Hrudaya Haadithu||Karnataka State Film Award for Best Music Director|
|Golmaal Part 2|
|C. B. I. Shiva|
|Halli Rambhe Belli Bombe|
|1992||Banni Ondsala Nodi|
|Jeevana Chaitra||Karnataka State Film Award for Best Music Director|
|Mana Mecchida Sose|
|Bhagawan Sri Saibaba|
|1996||Rambo Raja Revolver Rani|
|Rambha Rajyadalli Rowdy|
|Ellaranthalla Nanna Ganda|
Singanalluru Puttaswamaiah Muthuraj, better known by his stage name Dr. Rajkumar, was an Indian actor and singer who worked in Kannada cinema. Regarded as one of the greatest actors in the history of Indian cinema and a versatile actor, he is considered a cultural icon and holds a matinée idol status in the Kannada diaspora, among whom he is popularly called as Nata Saarvabhouma, Bangarada Manushya, Vara Nata, Gaana Gandharva, Rasikara Raja, Kannada Kanteerava and Rajanna/Annavru. He was honoured with Padma Bhushan in 1983 and Dadasaheb Phalke Award in 1995. He is the only lead actor to win National Award for singing. His 35 movies have been remade 58 times in 9 languages by 34 actors making him the first actor whose movies were remade more than fifty times and the first actor whose movies were remade in nine languages. He was the first actor in India to enact a role which was based on James Bond in a full-fledged manner. The success of his movie Jedara Bale is credited to have widely inspired a Desi bond genre in other Indian film industries. On the occasion of the "Centenary of Indian Cinema" in April 2013, Forbes included his performance in Bangaarada Manushya on its list of "25 Greatest Acting Performances of Indian Cinema". Upon his death, The New York Times had described him as one of India's most popular movie stars.
Sadananda Sagar, better known by his stage name Vajramuni, was an Indian actor who appeared in Kannada films. He portrayed negative characters during most of his career and was considered one of Kannada cinema's finest actors. Over his career, he came to be known for his "thundering voice and sterling performance[s]" that earned him the epithets, Nata Bhairava and Nata Bhayankara.
Singanalluru Puttaswamaiah Muthuraj, better known by his stage name Dr. Rajkumar, was an Indian actor, singer and producer who worked in Kannada cinema. Through his over five-decade long career of over 200 films, he was regarded one of the most pivotal and influential figures of the Kannada film industry. His films were praised for acting as a bridge between the popular and art films because of the theme of the story and their treatment. He debuted as a child actor in the 1942 Kannada film Bhakta Prahlada. His first role as an adult came in Sri Srinivasa Kalyana (1952) and as a lead, two years later, in Bedara Kannappa, which gave him stardom. He debuted as a singer with the track Om Namaha Shivaya from the 1956 film Ohileshwara. In 1960, he made his debut as a producer by producing Ranadheera Kanteerava. According to Ashish Rajadhyaksha and Paul Willemen in the book Encyclopedia of Indian Cinema, Ranadheera Kanteerava was the first "big hit" in Kannada cinema. In a film career spanning fifty years, Rajkumar received eleven Karnataka State Film Awards, including nine Best Actor and two Best Singer awards, eight Filmfare Awards South, and one National Film Award. Along with Vishnuvardhan and Ambareesh, he is counted in Kannada cinema's "triumvirate" as its most celebrated actor.
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Vijaya Bhaskar was an Indian music director and composer who composed music for several mainstream and experimental feature films in the Kannada film industry. Scoring music for over 600 feature films, Bhaskar worked in Tamil, Telugu, Malayalam, Marathi, Tulu and Konkani language films as well. He was a part of all films of director KSL Swamy (Ravi) and also shared a great association with acclaimed directors Puttanna Kanagal and Adoor Gopalakrishnan.
Hunsur Ramachandra Bhagyachandra, known mononymously as Bhargava, is an Indian film director who worked primarily in Kannada cinema. Originally a producer, he came to be considered one of the best directors in Kannada cinema, and he was awarded the Puttanna Kanagal Award, the highest award in Kannada cinema, in 2012. he has directed 50 films.
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Chitnahalli Udayashankar was an Indian lyricist and dialogue writer in the Kannada film industry for over three decades, who penned more than 3000 songs for films and devotional songs. His dialogues, screenplay and lyrics were instrumental in the success of many movies of Rajkumar. Udayashankar received four Karnataka State Film Award for Best Dialogue and two Karnataka State Film Award for Best Screenplay. He was the son of lyricist Chi. Sadashivaiah. His son Chi. Guru Dutt is an actor and director in Kannada and Tamil feature films.
Dr.Parvathamma Rajkumar was an Indian film producer and distributor. She was the wife of veteran Kannada actor Dr. Rajkumar. She produced successful films featuring Rajkumar and their sons Shiva Rajkumar, Puneeth Rajkumar and Raghavendra Rajkumar under the production house named "Poornima Enterprises". Actresses who found fame in her productions include Malashri, Prema, Rakshita, Sudha Rani and Ramya. She was awarded a doctorate from Bangalore University.
Mysore Srinivas, known by his stage name Thoogudeepa Srinivas was an Indian actor who appeared in Kannada films and is remembered for his portrayal of negative-shaded characters. He is the father of actor, Darshan and film director Dinakar.
M. S. Rajashekar was an Indian Kannada film director based in Bangalore. He made his directorial debut with Dhruva Thare starring Rajkumar which earned the Karnataka State Award for Second Best Film. His second movie Anuraga Aralithu was remade in Tamil, Telugu and Hindi. He went on to make successful films like Ratha Sapthami and Nanjundi Kalyana.
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Nuggehalli Rangaraj Prithviraj is an Indian actor who appeared in Kannada films and Kannada television serials. He appeared in over 116 films and 64 television serials in his four-decade-long career.
Raja Shankar or Rajashankar was an Indian actor in Kannada cinema. His films include Bhakta Kumbara (1974), Sampathige Saval (1974) and Sri Srinivasa Kalyana (1974). He also co-produced the 1974 Kannada movie Bangaarada Panjara starring Dr. Rajkumar and the 1976 Kannada movie Vijaya Vani.
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