|Born||Ashok Kumar Balakrishnan
12 December 1981 (age 35)
Thiruvaiyaru, Tamil Nadu, India
|Years active||1994 – present|
Ashok was born into a middle-class family to R. Balakrishnan and Rohini Balakrishnan and has an elder brother, Aroon. Ashok was brought up in Mumbai, Maharashtra and did his schooling at Fatima High School (Vidyavihar) and Vani Vidyalaya (Mulund, Mumbai). He then graduated with Majors in Sociology, Psychology & Hindi Literature from St. Xavier's College, Mumbai.
Ashok is established as the Main Lead (Protagonist - Hero) in feature films in South India, primarily in Tamil. His first step into the Tamil Film Industry was with Muruga, directed by R. T. Neason, which released in 2007, followed by Pidichirukku, directed by Kanagu, was released for Pongal 2008. He also did a cameo for a song in a Malayalam film titled Mulla, directed by Lal Jose and the journey continues...
His current project titled 'Ula' is directed by Mr.Rajan Madhav (Muran fame) where Ashok plays 'Saleem - the Baddie/Villain' for the first time. Other releases in 2015 would be the Thriller - Priyamudan Priya (bilingual-Tamil/Telugu), the lighter vein Romantic Comedy - Kannighapuram Sandhippil and the hard core rugged rustic villager "Karuppan" in the project tentatively titled Vaanam Partha Seemayilae.
Training & Work Experience
Ashok began learning Bharatnatyam at the age of four. He is the youngest disciple of T. S. Kadhirvelu Pillai. He is also trained in Western Contemporary Jazz Ballet and has worked with ace choreographers Terence Lewis, Remo D'souza and also got trained under the able guidance of dancers/choreographers from the Cunningham School (USA).
As a teenager, he played the role of Little Krishna in Ramanand Sagar's teleserial Sri Krishna for which he won the "Best Child Actor Award" from Uptron. It was telecast in Doordarshan in 1994-95. He also was awarded the coveted Nritya Mayur for excellence in dance from the State Government of Maharashtra.
He was actively involved in a lot of plays/stage and dance/theatre projects. He was involved in stage productions like the musical "Evita" directed by Alyque Padamsee, "Love is the Best Remedy" by Jean Jacques Bellot, "Katha" in Hindi directed by Ravi Mishra of Ekjute Productions for which Ashok won the Best Actor Award during the IPTA, Manch and Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan's/Bhavan's Kala Kendra Theatre Festivals. He also directed the play "Cryptic Death" for the Thespo Theatre Festival.
He had choreographed for several stage shows with Bollywood Celebrities like Asha Bhonsle, Sonu Nigam and Aamir Khan (for the Brittania Lagaan Match Event), before becoming an actor. He also worked as an assistant dance choreographer with Raju Khan for several Bollywood films. Ashok worked as a choreographer for an album as a tribute to M. S. Subbalakshmi. He performed at a Peace Concert post WTC Attacks 9/11.
He has performed on various stages across India and toured the U.S. and Europe with dance and theatre projects. He has acted in and choreographed several Indo-German and Indo-French dance and theatre projects. He has won several awards and honours.
|2013||Vetkathai Kettal Enna Tharuvaai||Shiva||Tamil|
|2014||Kadhal Solla Aasai||Mahesh||Tamil|
|2016||Ula||Saleem||Tamil||Slated for release|
|Vaanam Partha Seemayilae||Karuppan||Tamil|
|Konjam Koffee Konjam Kaadhal||Tamil||Cameo appearance|