Mithran Devanesen

From joining the Madras Players as a stage-sweeper to becoming an established English theatre directors, Mithran Devanesen made steady progress in a life devoted to the stage.

With a marketing and advertising background, Devanesen travelled widely and once won a gold medal in Jamaica for his production of Julius Caesar. In 1986, Mithran directed a Pulitzer prize-winning play called Shadow Box, which gave theatre acting in Chennai a new style. His famous productions include Dog's Hamlet, Brahma's Hair, Arturo Ui, Midsummernight's Dream, Seven Steps Around the Fire, Dance Like a Man, and This English.

Awarded the Charles Wallace India Trust Scholarship, Mithran also worked in films, as an actor in a French production Blue Mountains, and as a casting director and actor in an Italian film Gills.

Mithran conducted workshops for underprivileged children, taught English at Corporation schools, and sponsored scholarships for deserving students. His family runs an organisation called Roofs for the Roofless in 14 villages, south of Chennai.

A co-founder of the Spastics Society of India, Mithran also founded the Bow-Wow Club, a community based children's theatre.

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