Renowned mimicry artiste Nerella Venumadhav passed away at his house in Hanamkonda on Tuesday morning after a brief illness. He was 85.
Venumadhav, whose name was synonymous with mimicry art, was born in Mattewada in Warangal town in 1932. For his invaluable contribution to popularizing the mimicry art, he was awarded Padma Shree. He was nominated as a Member of Legislative Council of Andhra Pradesh by then Chief Minister P.V. Narasimha Rao in 1971. He started a diploma course at Telugu University, a first in the world. He was often regarded as father of Indian Mimicry. He was also hailed as the pioneer and maestro of mimicry in India.
Venumadhav started his career in 1947 at the age of 16. He performed in Telugu, English, Urdu, Hindi and Tamil. He toured all over the world and is the first mimic, who performed at the United Nations Organization, New York City. He was also awarded Sri RajaLakshmi Foundation award in 1981, Kala Prapoorna title by Andhra University Visakhapatnam in 1978, Honorary Doctorates by Andhra University, IGNOU and Kakatiya University and Lifetime Achievement Award by the Telugu Book of Records and Telangana Recordula Pustakam (The Book of Telangana Records) on his 83rd birthday, on December 28, 2015 at Hanumakonda. Known for his inimitable style of imitating voices and sounds, Venumadhav blazed trails in the art and had given numerous shows all over the world. His mimicry of a particular scene in Mckenna’s Gold is considered as the best even now.