PALLAVI VENKATARAMA IYER
Two months ago, one of my father’s (Pallavi Venkatrama Iyer) disciples, Paiyur C. Gopala Krishnan, a regular accompanist to Sirkazhi G. Sivachidambaram, called to remind me about my father’s centenary this year. In the past five or six years there have been many centurions like Madurai Mani Iyer, GNB and Alathur Brothers. All of them took to music as their profession and were well known among the rasikas. They were honoured and remembered by all. However, as my father was not a professional, very few may remember that this is his centenary year. No regrets, since he was well respected by all the senior musicians till his last.
Venkatarama Iyer was born on 2 September 1915. He learnt vocal music from Salem Doraiswamy Iyengar, then switched to the flute, as a student of Salem Venu Pillai. He was very close to Flute Mali. He started a trust in his name, along with Mali’s disciples T.S. Sankaran (who passed away a few months ago) and N. Ramani.
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