Born on 21 June 1981 in Kumbakonam, Tamil Nadu, Shri S. Gopi is a performer of the traditional art of Bommalattam, string and rod puppetry of Tamil Nadu. He is also trained in Carnatic vocal music under the guidance of his father, Shri T.N. Sankaranathan; in mridangam under Shri Laxmi Narayanan; and in stage art from Shri Sankaradas. He is actively involved in carving and painting of puppets including costume and jewellery designing. He has performed in numerous puppet festivals across the country and conducted workshops demonstrating the unique aspects of Bommalattam. On behalf of the Tamil Nadu Government and Tamil Nadu Eyal Isai Nataka Manram, he presented a puppet show at “Namaste France” in France in 2016. For his work in puppetry, he was awarded the Best Puppeteer Award by the Kamban Kazhagam, and was conferred the title of Kalai Ilaval from Thiruneria Tamil Mandram. Shri Shankaranathan Gopi is awarded the Ustad Bismillah Khan Yuva Puraskar of Sangeet Natak Akademi for the year 2016 for his notable talent in Bommalattam, string and rod puppet theatre of Tamil Nadu.