Sustaining Sampradaya 2015 — Announcement

The 38th year Cleveland Thyagaraja Festival is scheduled to start on Wednesday April 1, 2015. We have put together two programs for Sustaining Sampradaya that include some of the greatest compositions of Carnatic music in some of the most enchanting ragas.

The first program is an offering to the presiding deity of the seven hills, Lord Venkateswara. The second program will be dedicated to the memory of two of the greatest exponents of Indian Classical Arts namely the musicians' musician Sangeetha Kala Sagaram Prof. T.R. Subrahmanyam and the violin legend Sangeetha Rathnakara Sri M.S. Gopalakrishnan.

Sustaining Sampradaya — The Glory of Lord Venkateswara

Inaugural Concert
Saturday April 4, 2015; 4:00pm–6:30pm

  1. Sri Venkateswara Gadyam — Srishaila Srirangacharya
  2. Sriman Narayana — Bowli, Adi, Annamacharya
  3. Tera tiyaga rada — Gowlipantu, Adi, Thyagaraja
  4. Ikanainana — Pushpalathika, Adi, Thirupathi Narayanaswamy
  5. Seshachalanayakam — Varali, Roopakam, Dikshitar
  6. Paridaanamichithe — Bilahari, Kanda chapu, Patnam Subramania Iyer
  7. Sri Venkata gireeesham — Surati, Adi, Dikshitar
  8. Aparaadhamulanniyu — Lathangi, Adi, Patnam Subramania Iyer
  9. Venkatesa ninnu — Madhyamavathi, Adi, Thyagaraja
  10. Saragunapalimpa — Kedaragowlai, Adi, Poochi Srinivasa Iyengar
  11. Bhavayami gopalabalam — Yamunakalyani, Kanda chapu, Annamacharya
  12. Srinivasa thava charanela — Kharaharapriya, Roopakam, Papanasam Sivan
  13. Apudu manasu (Javali) mdash; Khamas, Roopakam, Patnam Subramania Iyer
  14. Thirupathi Venkata ramana — Sindhu Bhairavi, Adi, Purandara Dasa
  15. Srinivasa thiruvenkatam — Hamsanandi, Adi, Papanasam Sivan
  16. Jo achyuthananda — Kapi, Kanda chapu, Annamacharya
  17. Venkateswara prapatthi & mangalasasanam — Prativadibhayankara Ananthacharya

Sustaining Sampradaya — Tribute to Sri TRS & Sri MSG

Monday April 6, 2015; 4:00pm–6:30pm

  1. Vallabha nayakasya — Begada, Roopakam, Dikshitar
  2. Sri Varalakshmi — Sri, Roopakam, Dikshitar
  3. Amba neelayathakshi — Neelambari, Adi, Dikshitar
  4. Sogasuga mridanga talamu — Sriranjani, Roopakam, Thyagaraja
  5. Ethavunara — Kalyani, Adi, Thyagaraja
  6. Manavyalagincha radate — Nalinakanthi, Adi, Thyagaraja
  7. Sri Rajagopala — Saveri, Adi, Dikshitar
  8. Meenalochana — Dhanyasi, Mishra chapu, Syama Sastri
  9. Venugaana — Kedaragowlai, Roopakam, Thyagaraja
  10. Balagopala — Bhairavi, Adi, Dikshitar
  11. Moratopu chalada (Padam) — Sahana, Thisra thriputa, Kshetragna
  12. Apadhuru (Javali) — Khamas, Adi, Pattabhiramayya
  13. Manamu ledha — Hameer Kalyani, Adi, Thyagaraja
  14. Kshithija ramanam — Devagandhari, Adi, Dikshitar
  15. Era ra ra (Javali) — Khamas, Adi, Dharmapuri Subbarayar
  16. Nee matale (Javali) — Poorvikalyani, Adi, Pattabhiramayya
  17. Karunai deivame — Sindhu Bhairavi, Adi, Madurai Srinivasan

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 10, 2014. The above panel will select the performers out of the pool of applicants, and these will be notified by October 24th.

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 8, 2014. 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 2, 2015.

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 "Venkateswara" or "MSG & TRS" 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:

  • Glory of Lord Venkateswara — US $1,600 per person
  • Tribute to TRS & MSG — US $1,600 per person

The fees are payable on or before November 1, 2014.

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 2015 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