HYDERABAD: Renowned folk artist and founder of Arunodaya, a cultural and literary association, Rama Rao breathed his last on Sunday. He was 66 years old.
“Palleturi kooli raitha, nee pilla jalla challaga unnara?” (Oh rural tenant farmer, is your wife and children doing well?) was the first stage performance in 1973 when the folk singer in Rama Rao took birth.
At the age of 20, then, he created self-consciousness among the farmers of Anantapur district that turned his name to what many call as Arunodaya Rama Rao.
On Sunday, after complaining of chest pain, the singer breathed his last at a private hospital today at Andhra Pradesh Mahila Sabha hospital in the State.He is survived by wife, who was a former Maoist leader.
Founder of Arunodaya, a cultural and literary association, Rama Rao was vastly regarded for his songs that reflected the sufferings and hardships of the peasants.Making every effort to be the voice of those who agitated against the ruling establishments in the erstwhile Andhra Pradesh, Rama Rao had an illustrious career of more than 40 years.
Born in the drought-hit land of Molagavalli village of Aroor Mandal in Rayalaseema, Rama Rao also was an actor and held a lot of theatre plays in the State.
Inspired from the various aspects of village culture, he acquired inspirations from his relating songs from the people for his stage performances. Though he is credited to a voice of much training, Rama Rao was self-taught until he took training from Ghantasala in Madras for a few years when he sang for commercial films.But soon after that, he changed his mind to sing for the people and came back to Andhra Pradesh to strengthen groups that agitated against the ruling establishments.