Sustaining Sampradaya — 30th Year Inaugural Concert

The opening day of the 30th Annual St. Thyagaraja Music Festival of Cleveland falls on April 7, 2007. Ever since its inception in 1978, the inaugural concert of this festival had always been given by very senior and eminent musicians to a packed auditorium having other vidwans and serious connoisseurs in the audience. In this setting, the concerts had always been memorable both to the performers and to the audience.

We strongly believe that the participation and contribution of youngsters in our music competition have enhanced this festival's artistic excellence in no small measure. The 30th year being a landmark year for the Cleveland Festival, we would like to break with tradition and recognize the dedication of our regular participants in the Festival to this classical art.

We would like the inaugural concert to be given by a group of 30 artists to be chosen from among young music students who express an interest to participate. We invite you to write your interest if you are so inclined.

Details of the Concert

The inaugural concert will be at 4:00 P.M. on Saturday, April 7, 2007 — the opening day of the 30th Annual St. Thyagaraja Music Festival at Cleveland, OH.

The concert duration will be 2½ hours and will adhere to the traditional pattern of beginning with a Varnam and ending with a Thillana, Thiruppugazh and Mangalam. It will also include a Ragam Thanam Pallavi.

The individual pieces of the concert will be selected and the whole concert will be set by a panel of senior vidwans which will include vocalists, violinists, veena vidwans, flute artists and percussion instrumentalists.

The total number of performers for this inaugural concert will be limited to 30 inclusive of vocalists and accompanists. Although this will be a group performance, we think that there will still be scope to exhibit individual talent.

Expression of interest should be received by the Aradhana Committee no later than October 10, 2006.

The above panel will select 30 performers out of the pool of applicants, and these will be notified by October 25th. The list will also be posted in our web site.

Training by India based vidwans will begin by 1st week of November. There will be a minimum of 2 classes per week. We will be using Skype or other Internet based tools as well as telephones for imparting training.

The local teachers of the selected performers will have special recognition on the inaugural day.

If you are interested, please note that you should be ready to invest your time both for the classes as well as for the practice. This commitment has to begin in early November and has to continue up till the festival. The final rehearsal will be in Cleveland on Thursday April 5, 2007.

How to Apply

If you would like to be considered for participation in the inaugural concert, please email Gopi Sundaram ( with the following details:

  • Your name
  • Your address
  • Your residence, day time and cell phone numbers
  • Your e-mail addresses
  • Your age (as of March 31, 2007)
  • A short summary on your musical progress (less than 250 words)
  • List of teachers from whom you have learnt music
  • A short biography of your current music teacher (less than 250 words)
  • Your current music teacher's address, telephone numbers, and e-mail address
  • A maximum of 12 minute recording consisting of an introduction and a performance. The introduction should give your name, city and state and what you are trying to highlight in the performance. This should not exceed 2 minutes. This should be followed by a performance which should not exceed 10 minutes. Both should be in one file and should be in MP3 format.

There is a non refundable application fee of US $100. The check should be made payable to the Aradhana Committee, and mailed to the following address:

3447 Granton Avenue
Cleveland OH 44111

Please write you name and the words 'Concert Performance' on the face of the check at an appropriate place.

How the Selection Works

The selection process will be handled entirely by the India-based senior vidwans, and their decision will be final. No member of the Aradhana Committee will be part of the decision making process.

If you are accepted by the panel to participate in the performance on the inaugural day, we will immediately inform you about all the modalities of the training process. These include class schedules, concert items with ragas and talams, assignment of Vidwans for training, on line availability of the teaching materials, et cetera.

Please note that the vidwans who will impart the training are musicians of great eminence and repute (see list below), and we expect that the participants be sensitive to this great honor.

We expect that there will be a minimum of 50 classes and each class will be about 2 hours in duration. We expect to give you about 100 hours of music instructions by these vidwans. In addition, we will give you an opportunity to work with them on a one on one basis for consultations and clarifications.

If you are selected and if you accept our offer, there will be a training fee of $1,500 per person.

By giving you the opportunity to give the inaugural concert, we are acknowledging your commitment and your contribution to Carnatic Music. In a way, it is a celebration of what you have achieved in an environment where many different interests compete for your time and talent. We recognize that the training process is going to be intense and rigorous, but we also know that it is a very unique way to attain musical proficiency of high caliber in a very short time.

We hope you will choose to respond to this initiative in a positive way.

Who the Teachers Are

The musicians who have agreed to provide training for those selected to perform in the inaugural concert are:


  • Sri R.K. Srikantan
  • Nedunuri Sri Krishnamurthy
  • Chengalpattu Sri Ranganathan
  • Sri T.R. Subrahmanyam
  • Sri P.S. Narayanaswamy
  • Smt. R. Vedavalli
  • Trichur Sri V. Ramachandran
  • Smt. Charumathi Ramachandran
  • Thiruvengadu Sri Jayaraman
  • Smt. Suguna Purushotthaman
  • Smt. Suguna Varadachari
  • Smt. Rama Ravi
  • Sri N. Shashikiran
  • Smt. Sowmya
  • Smt. Padma Sandilyan


  • Sri T.N. Krishnan


  • Dr N. Ramani


  • Trivandrum Sri R. Venkataraman


  • Srimushnam Sri V. Raja Rao