Noted musicians and disciples sang Thanjavur Sankara Iyer’s compositions in his presence as a tribute.
To felicitate and perform a concert in the presence of the composer himself is a rare moment that a musician/disciple can experience. This memorable occasion came true for Dr. Sunder, Sriram Parasuram, Chitravina Ravikiran, V. V. Srinivasa Rao and Umayalpuram Mali, when they performed Thanjavur Sankara Iyer’s compositions in his presence, on September 1 in Tirunelveli. The nonagenarian stalwart, Sankara Iyer, is convalescing.
The Music Forum, Chennai, in association with Sri Jayendra School, Sankar Nagar, Tirunelveli, had organised a felicitation function to celebrate this living legendary composer. Top ranking musicians closely connected with him and who had learnt from him, got a chance to offer their pranams by rendering his compositions.
Thanjavur Sankara Iyer, fragile by appearance but musically as energetic as ever, greeted them all and his happiness showed when he saw the assembly of enthusiasts. He stayed through the five hours of concerts. His musical memory was perfect and he went 60 years down memory lane, recollecting and sharing many of his precious moments with doyens of the past. He laughed, became emotional and enjoyed every bit of what was happening on stage. It was as if he had absolutely merged with the music that was being performed. He was moved to tears at the end and blessed all the artists and those who had come to witness this event. The programme concluded with Valivalam Venkatraman, one of his disciples, rendering three more of Sankara Iyer’s songs.
The local team from Sri Jayendra School which included Mrs. Usha Raman and Mrs. Nirmal created the right ambience and the hall was packed with admirers of the composer that included some who had arrived from abroad. It was a moving session where ‘guru bhakti’ was profusely expressed.