Arundhati Nag (née Rao) (born 6 July 1956) is a film and theatre actress. 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, and then in Kannada, Tamil, Malayalam and English, in Bangalore.
Following her marriage to Kannada actor-director Shankar Nag (1954–1990), her association with theatre continued in Bangalore, where she performed several plays in Kannada: Girish Karnad's "Anju Mallige", "27 Mavalli Circle" based on the famous play 'Wait Until Dark', "Sandhya Chayya" (Jayant Dalvi), Girish Karnad's "Nagamandala", and Bertolt Brecht's "Mother Courage" as "Hulaguru Huliyavva". She also worked in several Kannada movies: "Accident" (1984), Parameshi Prema Prasanga" (1984) and "Nodiswamy, Navirodu Heege" (1987).
Nag went on to realise a long-time dream of building a theatre space dedicated to quality theatre in Bangalore: Ranga Shankara.
She is a recipient of the Sangeet Natak Akademi Award (2008), the Padma Shri (2010) and the National Film Awards (57th) in 2010.
Nag's career spans over 40 years of theatre, film and television. She is the founder and the Managing Trustee of the Sanket Trust, established in 1992, which runs Ranga Shankara, a theatre space in Bangalore.,. Ranga Shankara offers a quality theatre experience for theatre lovers in city. The annual Ranga Shankara Theatre Festival, now in its twelfth year, has become a regular feature on Bangalore's cultural calendar.
Nag continues to be actively involved in theatre: her most recent works include Girish Karnad's "Bikhre Bimb" (Hindi) and "Odakalu Bimba" (Kannada).
Her last major movie was The Man Who Knew Infinity (2016), in which she played the mother of the mathematical wizard Ramanujan. She has also appeared in Hindi movies including Paa (2009), "Sapnay" (1997) and "Dil Se" (1998), Kannada movies including Golibar (1991), Jogi (2005) and "Andar Bahar", and Malayalam Da Thadiya (2012)
Nag was born in 1956 in Delhi. Her family moved to Mumbai when she was 10. At 17, she met Shankar Nag, also a theatre artist. Six years later, the two got married and moved to Bangalore. Shankar became a well-known film actor, and later a director, most remembered for his TV adaptation of R. K. Narayan's Malgudi Days (1987). They had a daughter together, Kaavya.
In 1990, Shankar died in a car accident. Arundhati continued to act in theatre, and began to work towards realising her dream of a theatre space, which in 2004, finally materialised into Ranga Shankara, which is today one of India's premier venues for theatre.A Passage to India (1984)
Indian Summer (1987)
1985: Won: Karnataka State Film Award for Best Supporting Actress – Accident
2005: Won: Best Supporting Actress Award, Karnataka State Awards – Jogi
2006: Won: Citizen Extraordinaire' from the Rotary Club Bangalore
2008: Won: Sangeet Natak Akademi Award – Theatre, Acting
2010: Won: 57th National Film Award for Best Supporting Actress, Paa
2010: Awarded: Padmashree Award
2010: Won: Filmfare Award for Best Supporting Actress, Paa
2010: Won: Star Cine Award for Best Supporting Actress, Paa
2010: Conferred A Doctorate: for services rendered to the world of theatre, by Bijapur Women's University, Bijapur