Born in 1948, Shri Ratan Thiyam has been active in theatre from his early youth. He graduated from the National School of Drama, Delhi, in 1974 and established the Chorus Repertory Theatre in Imphal in 1976. Drawing upon the traditional forms of Manipuri music, dance, recitation and martial arts Shri Ratan Thiyam has developed a distinctive contemporary style of his own. Among his major productions are Urubhangam, Antigone and Chakravyuha. He received the Fringe Firsts 1987 award at the Edinburgh Festival last year. Shri Thiyam has contributed to actor-training methodology conducting a large number of workshops all over India. He has been Director of the National School of Drama from 1987. For his eminence in theatre and his contribution to its enrichment Shri Ratan Thiyam receives the Sangeet Natak Akademi Award for direction.