Tanikella Bharani – The Multifaceted Creative Genius

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What is the most suitable way to address him?

A gifted actor? An eminent writer?  An eloquent speaker?  A profound poet?  A distinguished director? Or a Telugu scholar?

Probably, all of these in no particular order.

Tanikella Bharani is indeed a powerhouse of talent Telugu Cinema is blessed with.  Let’s delve into his multiple facets on the eve of his 61st Birthday.

Gifted Actor

“Naakoka Bulli chelli

Nede gully lo daaniki pelli

Ila naa chelli ki pelli jaragali malli malli” recites Thotaramudu in Yamaleela.

Bharani played a goon with finest Telangana accent. This evergreen funny scene is evident of his fantastic comedy timing.  Thotaramudu soon became an iconic character with white Laalchi, blue jeans, Gutkha on the tongue and that intimidating black tilak.

That dialogue of “Gitla decide jeshna” made his mannerism click. Tanikella could balance humor and felony in the perfect ratio. For instance, his role in Athadu delivered great humor in the most serious manner. When Brahmaji proposes a murder sketch having many sumos, Tanikella replies “Anni ballu oddu ra Naanna, Petrol rate kuda pergindi”. He put a beautiful underlying humor keeping the iniquitous role intact.

tanikella-actor Tanikella Bharani - The Multifaceted Creative Genius

Playing various roles with effortless finesse – Tanikella in the film Yamaleela

The 61 year old played a fraudster Manikyam in Money where he swindles Khan Dada. He perfectly played the character, showing how the gullible wannabe actors are cheated in Filmnagar on a day-to-day basis. Tanikella played serious roles efficiently, be it positive or negative.  Through a tiny role in Julayi, the scene where he inspires his son, produced goosebumps.  A powerful role he enacted was in Indra, where he is tight-lipped for an hour and suddenly erupts “Yevari Peri chepte….”.

The lewd characters that he played in Aame and Ammo Okato Taareku represented the in-house filthy family member.  Samudram saw him playing a very interesting cruel wannabe politician with an ultimate weakness – his retarded wife.   He is also a perfectionist in playing the loyal henchman right from the days of Shiva to the recent Gabbar Singh. His other unforgettable roles were in Mahalakshmi Recording Dance Troupe, Ladies Tailor, Balarama Krishnulu,  Appulappa Rao, Nuvvu Nenu, Bombayi Priyudu, Seethamma Vakkitlo Sirimalle Chettu and many more.

Bharani’s dream role is to play the Shakuni mama in epic, Mahabharatham. If that happens, no doubt he will prove he is unmatchable!

Writer, Poet

As a dialogue writer, Bharani has penned the dialogues for films like Shiva, Yamaleela, Money Money and Ghatothkachudu.  Though these films have good enough dialogues to continue his dialogue-writing streak, he didn’t exploit this skill. His interest and passion was more towards literature.

pyasa Tanikella Bharani - The Multifaceted Creative Genius

HRD minister Ganta Srinivasa Rao felicitating acclaimed writer and poet Tanikella Bharani on the release of his book ‘Pyasa’ at Kalabharathi indoor stadium in Visakhapatnam

One side of the spectrum, he has devotional books like Aata Gadaraa Siva and Sabhashuraa Sankara under his name.  He also penned songs on Lord Shiva which when recited by himself creates a divine aura. On the other side of the spectrum are his work like Parikini and Nakshatra Darshanam.  His latest book is Pyaasa. This book was prestigiously released in the British parliament. It’s a rare feat indeed that was possible only by the literary legend.

Bharani, coming from a theatre background, has a penchant for writing plays too.  Way back, when he ventured into theatre, he used to write few dialogues.  Eventually, he grew to be one of the greatest playwrights in Telugu. He has some impressive dramas like Jambu Dweepam, Kokkorokko,  Chal Chal Gurram and Gograhanam to his credit.

Tanikella Bharani’s recital talent is unbounded too.  It is a treat to your ears whenever he gives a speech during his felicitations.  The way he articulates his phrases makes us feel that he is Goddess Saraswati’s favorite son. His words will melt you and sentences deeply touch the hearts.  When he talks about Lord Shiva, he instantly takes us to a different world.

The way he puts Siva Tattvam into songs is something out of the world.  A line from his Shabaash Ra Shankara goes like this

“Bayatiki banda bhootuvi..Ardam kaani lolothivi..

Karigey raathivi..Param jyotivi..Shabaash ra shankara..”

So intense and so profound!

The Director

Adding to numerous feathers in the cap, this favorite son of Saraswathi Devi has one very significant. He is an award-winning director too. Bharani made short films like Sira and Grahanam which won lot of acclaim.

In 2012, he made his first feature film, Mithunam which was no less than a masterpiece. With just two characters, he manages to keep the viewer glued throughout the duration. This is no joke.  His directorial skills shook everyone to surprise. Mithunam is a story about an aged couple, their petty fights and their unconditional love. The whole movie shot in a house in village brings out a unique feel.

Midhunam Tanikella Bharani - The Multifaceted Creative Genius

Explaining the shot to S P Balasubrmanyam while shooting for Mithunam

The movie also speaks about the conversations and situations of those elderly parents who have a son settled abroad and calls them once in a week.   Bharani’s direction and screenplay made for a very impressive story.

He is yet to begin his second feature film ‘Bhakta Kanappa’. The lead hasn’t been finalized yet.

Multi-facted talents like Tanikella Bharani are rare gems. Having such a personality a part of Telugu Cinema is definitely a boon to the land of Telugu people. In one word, he is ‘ADBUTAHA’

Kostalife wishes him a fabulous birthday and a healthy life!



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