Arundhati Nag (née Rao) is a prominent South Indian polyglot film actress and theatre personality. She has been involved with multilingual Theatre in India, for over 25 years, first in Mumbai where she got involved with Indian People's Theatre Association (IPTA), and did various productions in Gujarati, Marathi, and Hindi theatre, besides getting involved in television, director Jyoti Vyas's Gujarati TV series, Haji Aavti Kaal Che. Later and after her marriage to Kannada actor-director Shankar Nag (1954–1990), her association with theatre continued in Bangalore, culminating in realizing the dream project of her late husband, the Ranga Shankara theatre, at J P Nagar, a suburb in Bangalore. She was awarded the 2008 Sangeet Natak Akademi Award in Theatre Acting by Sangeet Natak Akademi, India's National Academy of Music, Dance and Theatre. She was also awarded the 57th National Film Awards as Best Supporting Actress for her role in Paa.
Arundathi is the founder and the Managing Trustee of the Sanket Trust, established in 1992, which has Girish Karnad as its chairman, and which runs the Ranga Shankara, a Bangalore theatre which after four years of construction was inaugurated on 28 October 2004. Now the annual Ranga Shankara Theatre Festival has become a regular feature on Bangalore's cultural calendar.
She was born in Delhi, but her family moved to Mumbai when she was 10. Arundhati was passionate about theatre in her school days. She joined an amateur theatre group in Mumbai and in her teen years, she was doing as many as 42 shows a month in Marathi, Gujarati, Hindi and English.
At 17, she met Shankar Nag, also a theatre artist. Six years later, the two got married and she moved to Bangalore. Shankar became popular film actor, and later a director, most remembered for his TV adaptation of RK Narayan's Malgudi Days (1987). In 1990, the young couple and their daughter were travelling for the muhurat of a film, when a lorry hit their car in a head-on collision. Shankar Nag was killed instantly while Arundhati's legs were broken, her hands and face covered in bruises; their daughter was also injured although not seriously.
In 2006, she was awarded the 'Citizen Extraordinaire' Award by The Rotary Club of Bangalore. Arundathi's last major movie was the Kannada blockbuster Jogi, for which she also won the Karnataka Government's Best Supporting Actress award for the year 2005. Her most recent production has been Girish Karnad's Bikhre Bimb. Arundathi has also acted in other language films such as Minsara Kanavu (1997), dubbed into Hindi as Sapnay (1997), Dil Se.. (1998).
|1979||22 June 1897||Marathi|
|1983||Nodi Swamy Navirodu Hige||Kannada||Jaya|
|1985||Parameshi Prema Prasanga||Kannada|
|1985||Accident||Kannada||Directed by Shankar Nag|
|1993||Golibar||Kannada||Directed by Shivamani|
|1996||Kama Sutra: A Tale of Love||English||Annabi|
|1997||Minsaara Kanavu||Tamil||Mother Superior|
|1998||Dil Se..||Hindi||AIR director|
|2003||Ek Alag Mausam||Hindi||Aparna's mother|
|2009||Paa||Hindi||Vidya Balan's mother/Bum||Won National Film Award for Best Supporting Actress|
|2012||Da Thadiya||Malayalam||"Night Rider"|
- 1985: Won: Karnataka State Film Award for Best Supporting Actress – Accident
- 2005: Won: Best Supporting Actress Award - Jogi
- 2008: Won: Sangeet Natak Akademi Award - Theatre Acting
- 2010: Won: Star Screen Award Best Supporting Actress, Paa
- 2010: Nominated: Filmfare Best Supporting Actress Award, Paa
- 2010: Won: National Film Award for Best Supporting Actress - Paa
- Sanket Trust Ranga Shankara Official website.
- Arundhati Nag Profile and Interview mumbaitheatreguide.com.
- A theatre of one's own Frontline, Volume 21 - Issue 24, 20 November - 3 December 2004.
- Dream of a theatre The Hindu, 21 November 2004.
- Ready for an encore Times of India, 28 September 2003.
- Sangeet Natak Akademi Award Sangeet Natak Akademi.
- Ranga Shankara offers bonanza for theatre lovers in city The Hindu, 21 October 2005.
- Managing Trustee The Hindu, 9 December 2006.
- Arundhati Nag - Making The World See Her Dreams! South Asian Women's Forum, 7 March 2005.
- Ranga Shankara theatre festival rolls on The Hindu, 16 November 2004.
- Freedom to express - Arundhati Nag
- Ready for an encore The Times of India
- Arundathi bags Citizen Extraordinaire award The Hindu, 16 May 2006.
- Return of Arundhati Nag - Plays a lead role in 'Jogi' starring ... viggy.com.
- Kailashnath, Dr. Koppikar; Chheda, Subhash, 22 June 1897, Celebrating 25 years., retrieved 2009,03-06
- Arundathi Nag at the Internet Movie Database
- Arundhati Nag: Life is beautiful - Interview Times of India