Profile - Chandrasekhariah
Chandrasekhariah was born on 4 June 1915 in a musical family with Andhra antecedents settled down in Mysore seven generations ago. Members of the family have been followers of the advaita system of philosophy propounded by Adi Sankara, owing allegiance to the Sringeri Peetham. His grandfather was Pallavi Ramalingiah, a disciple of Manambuchavadi Venkatasubbiah, who in turn was a direct disciple of Tyagaraja. His father B. Ramiah, who was on the personal staff of Maharaja Nalwadi Krishnaraja Wodeyar (1884-1940), was trained by his father. Thus Chandrasekhariah belongs to the guru-sishya lineage of the great savant of Tiruvarur. His mother Varalakshmi too was a trained musician; she was a disciple of Veena Sundara Shastry (1853-1935), a court musician of Mysore who emulated Tyagaraja and his devotion to Sree Rama in his daily life.
Raja, born Joseph Levine on 12 March 1930 in New York City, was a true devotee of Indian dance and dedicated most of his adult life to learning and performing Indian dance, both in the United States and India. He died on 12 August 1999 of natural causes. In 1955,1 was fortunate to meet Bhanumathi Menon who was then married to Krishna Rao, a big honcho in the United Nations. She asked me if I would play the tabla and sing Taye Yasoda for one of her recitals in New York.