Sitar maestro Pt. Ravi Shankar’s 100th anniversary in April is being marked worldwide with various musical tributes. It is illuminating today to take a look at his remarkable life, and eight years after his death, attempt to evaluate his contribution to Indian classical music. One of the most decorated Indian musicians globally; Ravi Shankar was the recipient of the highest award in India—the Bharat Ratna, five Grammy awards (two awarded posthumously) and the Knight of the British Empire, amongst many other accolades.
Rajam is an exceptionally accomplished musician and has received wide acclaim for her performances since the 1960s. Her speciality lies in rendering the gayaki ang on the violin, for which she has developed a precise bowing and fingering technique. Her style with its supple strength is yet steeped in emotion, which remains the source of her lasting appeal to her audience. She is adept in the various facets of Hindustani music, be it the majestic alap of dhrupad, or the lyrical khayal, the thumri, the bhajan, or the vivacious Natya sangeet and tappa.
RA. Ramamani is a multifaceted musician. Singing avadhana pallavis, providing dizzying vocals for Indo-Jazz bands, composing for jazz and fusion, running a music school, training scores of students in India and abroad in Carnatic music— she has done it all. This versatile artist turned seventy on 2 March 2020
Among the senior frequently featured dancers, Malavika Sarukkai’s intense performance, evinced high-quality energy, starting with Tyagaraja’s Sambho Mahadeva in Pantuvarali, the dance elaborating on the ‘Paramadayakara Gangadhara’ depicting Ganga during her descent contained in the matted locks of Siva.
We present a centenary tribute by Shailaja Khanna to one
of the most popular musicians of our time—Pandit Ravi
Shankar, a rare artist who won fans worldwide with his music
and charisma. Though he has been featured in our magazine,
we felt that an article about the maestro would be a fitting
tribute to a good friend of Sruti on his 100th birthday.
We have a special feature on veteran Hindustani violinist
N. Rajam who, although she hails from the south, has
mastered the Hindustani medium and blazed a trail. She
turned 81 this March.
Another versatile musician from the south who has made a
mark in world music and collaborated with jazz musicians
too, is vidushi Ramamani from Bengaluru.