Born in 1900 in Nagamangala, Karnataka, into a family of puppeteers, Shri T. Hombiah was initiated in the traditional shadow theatre of the region by his father.Over a long career, Shri Hombaiah has performed more than a hundred shadow plays based on the Mahabharata and the Ramayana. His expertise in manipulating his puppets and his ability in the musical accompaniment have won him recognition as a master puppeteer. Shri Hombaiah participated in the World Puppetry Conference held in the United States in 1980-81. He has received the Karnataka Janapada and Yakshagana Academy Award and has been felicitated by the Chitra Kala Parishad, Bangalore. Shri T. Hombaiah receives the Sangeet Natak Akademi Award for his contribution to puppetry.