The Music Academy’s Sangita Kala Acharya Award is being conferred on two eminent vocalists – Prof. D. Pasupathy and vidushi Kalyani Sharma.
Hailing from Vandavasi, Prof. D. Pasupathy enrolled into Kalakshetra as a 14-year-old and had the fortune of learning from such stalwarts as Tiger Varadachariar, Buladur Krishnamurthy Sastrigal, Mudicondan Venkatarama Iyer and Mysore Vasudevachariar. He also learnt the nuances of veena playing from Kalpagam Swaminathan, besides training in Bharatanatyam and nattuvangam.
After his post-graduate diploma, he was part of Kalakshetra’s faculty. He then moved to Tirupathi where he retired as the principal of the Sri Venkateswara College of Music and Dance, a TTD institute. At the behest of Rukmini Devi Arundale, Pasupathy returned to Kalakshetra and was its vice-principal till he retired in 1992.
Among his other major achievements are his music compositions for Annamacharya kritis and several Kalakshetra dance dramas including ‘Panchali Sabadam’ and ‘Tirukural Bharatham.’ An A-Top Artist with AIR, Pasupathy has performed all over India and abroad.
Kalyani Sharma has had her training in vocal and veena under two stalwarts – Semmangudi Srinivasa Iyer and K.S. Narayanaswamy. She also learnt padams and javalis from Brinda and Muktha.
Born in Thiruvananthapuram into a musical-minded family, Kalyani began her musical journey as an eight-year old, and till date, her passion continues to be music. She was a faculty member of Mumbai’s Shanmukhananada Vidyalaya, from which she retired as joint director.
Kalyani is one of the few artists to have mastered and popularised the rare Samudaya kritis including Kovur Pancharatnas and Srirangam Pancharatnas. She has authored books on Carnatic music and released a CD on rare padams along with another Mumbai-based vocalist Alamelu Mani. Today, she keeps herself busy teaching students all that she has learnt from her illustrious gurus.