Sustaining Sampradaya 2014 — Announcement

The 30th year Cleveland Thyagaraja Festival held on April 7, 2007 made musical history. Thirty young Indian-Americans, the Sustaining Sampradaya group, trained by some of the leading vidwans of Carnatic music, gave a spellbinding concert to a packed auditorium on the inaugural day. Again, all concerts in the succeeding years by the Sustaining Sampradaya group were received to critical acclaim.

The 37th year Cleveland Thyagaraja Festival is scheduled to start on Wednesday April 16, 2014 and will be dedicated to the memory of two of the greatest exponents of Indian Classical Arts namely, the musician's musician Ramnad Sri Krishnan, and the violin legend Sangeetha Rathnakara Lalgudi Sri G. Jayaraman. Both adhered strictly to the classicism of Carnatic music, and yet shaped and defined the art in their own inimitable way and left an indelible mark.

Both programs set for the Sustaining Sampradaya group illustrate the diversity of form, language and composers handled by these stalwarts and reflect the purity of style they adhered to. The Aradhana Committee, in consultation with senior vidwans and vidushis, has put together two very special concerts invoking memories of these two great vidwans.

Sustaining Sampradaya — Tribute to Ramnad Krishnan

Inaugural Concert
Saturday April 19, 2014; 4:00pm–6:30pm

  1. Nera nammithi (Varnam) — Kanada, Ata, Poochi Srinivasa Iyengar
  2. Ninnaada — Kannada, Adi, Thyagaraja
  3. Yagnathulu — Jayamanohari, Adi, Thyagaraja
  4. Amma raavamma — Kalyani, Kanda chapu, Dikshitar
  5. Sanathana — Phalamanjari, Adi, Thyagaraja
  6. Akshayalingavibho — Sankarabharanam, Mishra chapu, Dikshitar
  7. Sri maanini — Poornashadjam, Adi, Thyagaraja
  8. Raghupathe — Sahana, Roopakam, Thyagaraja
  9. Palinchu Kamakshi — Madhyamavathi, Adi, Syama Sastri
  10. Sri Kamakshi — Vasantha, Adi, Thiruvarur Ramaswamy Pillai
  11. Thulasamma — Devagandhari, Adi, Thyagaraja
  12. Nee bhajanagana — Nayaki, Adi, Thyagaraja
  13. Mutta vaddura (Javali) mdash; Saveri, Adi, Chinnaiah
  14. Charumathi (Javali) — Kanada, Adi, Pattabhiramayya
  15. Modijesevelara (Javali) — Khamas, Adi, Pattabhiramayya
  16. Thillana — Poornachandrika, Adi, Poochi Srinivasa Iyengar

Sustaining Sampradaya — Tribute to Lalgudi G. Jayaraman

Monday April 21, 2014; 6:45pm–9:15pm

  1. Varnam — Charukesi, Adi, Lalgudi G. Jayaraman
  2. Nadaloludai — Kalyanavasantham, Roopakam, Thyagaraja
  3. Ganamurthe — Ganamurthi, Adi, Thyagaraja
  4. Sujana jeevana — Khamas, Roopakam, Thyagaraja
  5. Meenakshi me mudam — Poorvikalyani, Adi, Dikshitar
  6. Sangeetha gnanamu — Dhanyasi, Adi, Thyagaraja
  7. Palukukanta — Navarasakannada, Adi, Thyagaraja
  8. Mamava sada varade — Natakurinji, Roopakam, Swathi Thirunal
  9. Lalithe — Bhairavi, Adi, Thyagaraja
  10. Mahitha pravritha — Kambodhi, Thisra thriputa, Thyagaraja
  11. Varanarada — Vijayasri, Adi, Thyagaraja
  12. Apadhuru (Javali) — Khamas, Adi, Pattabhiramayya
  13. Mariyadha theliyakane (Javali) — Surati, Roopakam, Patnam Subramania Iyer
  14. Theeradha vilaiyattu pillai — Ragamalika, Adi, Subrahmanya Bharathi
  15. Alli vizhiyalum (Thiruppugazh) — Jonpuri, Adi, Arunagirinathar
  16. Thillana — Revathi, Mishra chapu, Lalgudi G. Jayaraman

Training will be spearheaded by senior vidwans and vidushis.

The Process

Please note that these two concerts will lay a lot of emphasis on raga elaboration, kalpana swaram and other aspects of manodharmam. We plan to give fairly rigorous training on these besides giving the participants a very authentic and traditional version of the krithis.

Smt. Suguna Varadachari will have the overall responsibility for supervising the participants' musical progress in both streams. She will be in the US about 4 weeks before the Festival to monitor each and every one's progress. In this, she will be assisted by a team of other musicians.

The concert format 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 each of these programs will be limited and will include 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 13, 2013. The above panel will select the performers out of the pool of applicants, and these will be notified by October 27th.

Early Admission: If you apply before August 30, we will fast track your application process (including the interview process if you are a first timer) and let you know the decision by September 15. This gives you a better chance of being part of the Sustaining Sampradaya program.

Training by India-based vidwans will begin on November 9, 2013. There will be a minimum of 2 classes per week. We will be using video conferencing or other Internet-based tools for imparting training.

Additionally, individual coaching will be given once a week by a musician from India, covering the weekend classes. This coaching will be during weekdays at a mutually convenient time. This allows the vidwan/vidushi to personally assess the progress made and the potential.

If you are interested, please note that you should be ready to invest your time both for the classes as well as for 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 17, 2014.

How to Apply

If you would like to be considered for participation in one or both of these concerts, there is a two-step process to follow:

Step 1: Application Information

Please email Gopi Sundaram ( the following:

  • Completed application form. Please download the form, and fill out all fields. Incomplete applications will not be accepted.
  • An audition recording in MP3 format, consisting of an introduction and your performance. The introduction (maximum 2 minutes) should give your name, city, state, and what you are trying to highlight in the performance. This should be followed by a performance not exceeding 10 minutes. Both should be in the same file, in MP3 format (maximum 12 minutes).

The audition recording is not necessary if you have participated in an earlier Sustaining Sampradaya program.

Please email both the completed application form and the audition recording (if necessary) to Gopi Sundaram (

Step 2: Application Fee

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

810 Newcastle Street
Saline, MI 48176-8869

Please write your name and the words "Ramnad Krishnan" or "Lalgudi Jayaraman" 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 vidushis, and their decision will be final. No member of the Aradhana Committee will be a part of the decision-making process.

If you are accepted by the panel to participate in any of the performances, 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, online availability of the teaching material, et cetera.

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

If you are selected and if you accept our offer, there will be a training fee which is:

  • Tribute to Ramnad Krishnan — US $1,600 per person
  • Tribute to Lalgudi G. Jayaraman — US $1,600 per person

The fees are payable on or before November 3, 2013.

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. Based on our experience with the previous years' concerts, we are confident that the 2014 concerts will also prove to be memorable.

We had an overwhelming response for this initiative in the past, and I hope that you will choose to respond to this year's initiative also in a similarly positive way.

V V Sundaram