Kalanilayam Unnikrishnan was
born on Oct 16, 1948. His father is Thakazhi Madhava Kuruppu and mother is Radhamma.
During his High school studies, he joined Unnayi Warrier Smaraka Kalanilayam in 1960 and learned Kathakali Vesham for 2 years and did his first performance. Then in 1963 started learnng Kathakali Music under Cherthala Kuttappa Kuruppu in Kalanilayam. He finished his studies under Krishnan Kutty Marar, Vaikkom Velappan Nair and Kalamandalam Sankaran Embranthiri. In 1970 worked as music teacher in Kalamandalam on temporary basis for 6 months and from 1972 worked in Kalanilayam. From 1980 working as permanent employee in Kalamandalam and now is the Head of the Department and Vice Principal.
His Grandfather is Thakazhi Kochu Kunju Kuruppu, known as Danavari Kuruppu. His father Thakazhi Madhava Kuruppu is the writer of 4 stories and is also a musician.
Has performed in many stages all around Kerala and India and in foreign countries namely America, Italy, France, Mexico, Canada, England, Belgium, Iran, Thaiwan and Thailand. He is an 'A' Grade artist in AIR and Dooradarsan. Has got many Awards from many Clubs like Kollam, Alappuzha and Iringalakkuda. In 2001 received Senior Fellowship from Central Government. Has done music direction for 12 stories and performed in many stages. Has published a cassette by Magna Sounds performed by himself and also other cassettes performed with Kalamandalam Unnikrishna Kurup etc.