Sri Lankan Pop Music Maestro A.E. Manoharan

Although A.E.Manoharan is famous today as a pop singer few will know that he began his entertainment career by acting in dramas and locally produced films in the ‘50s and early ‘60s. Manoharan’s singing career began in Colombo in 1970 when he sang for Great Friends Enterprises. In 1964 he acted as hero in the 1st Tamil movie produced in Jaffna by Joe Devanand named “Pasa Nila”. Since the he has acted in more than 260 films in five languages. In 1972 he was appointed as a Producer for Dramas in the commercial section of the Sri Lanka Broadcasting Corporation. It was during this time that he started specializing in pop-music and released many labels in Tamil, English and Sinhalese. During this period he also recorded the now popular “Surangani” theme on suriya label. In 1973 he was presented with the Pop Chakravarthi title at a music festival at the open-air stadium in Jaffna.

Between the years 1975-76 he performed several music shows throughout Sri Lanka in both Sinhala and Tamil. Among the favourites during this period are Patumami, choodamanike, surangani etc. His singing career also took him along to acting in films and in 1977 he acted as the hero in Vaadai Kaatru which won the President’s Award for the best story. This was soon followed by his role in Tamil films in which he acted with leading South Indian idols like Sivaji Ganesan Rajnikanth, Kamalahasan and Dharmendra.

Manoharan has also performed in musical shows all over the world in countries like U.K., Australia, Europe, Canada, Singapore and Malaysia. Manoharan was also a contract singer for Hotel Breeze in Madras during the year 1999-2000.He has also been a singer at the Surangani Music Festival in Chennai for a number of years. During A.E.Manoharan the years 2004, 2005 and 2006 Manoharan had acted and also been a playback singer in several films including “Virumbuhiren”, “Thoty Jeya”, “Jay Jay” Directed by Charan and Durai, “Vaaliban”,”Kaathal Kaditham”,”18 vayathil naan” and in Malayalam, “Thuruppu Gulna” with Mamooty.

A.E. Manoharan was honoured with an Appreciation Award at the 9th annual Awards Gala of the Canadian Tamils Chamber of Commerce, held on April 1, 2006.

[A.E. Manoharan and President of Canadian Tamils Chamber of Commerce, Logan Velumailum]
[TamilWeek, Apr 9 2006]

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