Thirty-six persons from music, dance, theatre, puppetry chosen for Sangeet Natak Akademi Awards 2012.

Legendary South Indian composer Ilayaraja is among nine artistes from the field of music who will receive the Sangeet Natak Akademi Award for 2012, while Grammy Award-winning percussionist T. H. Vinayakram and veteran playwright Ratan Thiyam are among three personalities chosen for the prestigious Sangeet Natak Akademi fellowship.

The Akademi has selected 36 persons from the fields of music, dance, theatre and puppetry for the Sangeet Natak Akademi Awards 2012.

Ilayaraja has been awarded for creative and experimental music. The other eight eminent artistes from the field of music are: Rajashekhar Mansur and Ajay Pohankar for Hindustani vocal music, Sabir Khan (tabla) and Bahauddin Dagar (rudra veena) for Hindustani instrumental music.

O. S. Thyagarajan for Carnatic vocal music, Mysore M. Nagaraja (violin) and K. V. Prasad (mridangam) for Carnatic instrumental music and Bhai Balbir Singh Ragi (gurbani) for other major traditions of music have been selected for the award.

N. Rajam, violinist who performs Hindustani classical music, T. H. Vinayakram and Ratan Thiyam have been selected for the Sangeet Natak Akademi Fellowships.

The Fellowship of the Akademi is restricted to a very limited number at a given time. At present, there are only 40 such Fellows. The honour of Akademi Fellow carries a cash award of Rs. 3 lakh, while Akademi Awards carry Rs. 1 lakh, besides Tamrapatra and Angavastram.

In the field of dance, nine practitioners, Priyadarsini Govind (Bharatanatyam), Vijay Shankar (Kathak), Vazhengada Vijayan (Kathakali), Vedantam Ramalinga Sastry (Kuchipudi), Sharmila Biswas (Odissi), Jai Narayan Samal (Chhau), Painkulam Damodara Chakyar (Kutiyattam), Jwala Prasad (music for dance) and Aditi Mangaldas (creative & experimental dance) have been selected for the award.

In theatre, those chosen for the award are: Arjun Deo Charan for playwriting, Tripurari Sharma and Waman Kendre for direction, Parvesh Sethi, Nirmal Rishi and Purisai Kannappa Sambandan for acting, Murari Roychoudhury for theatre music and Ghulam Rasool Bhagat for major traditions of theatre (Bhand Pather).

Goru Channabasappa for folk music (Karnataka), Kinaram Nath Oja for Suknani Ojapali (Assam), Prem Singh Dehati for folk theatre (Haryana), Sulochana Chavan for Lavani (Maharashtra), Mattannur Sankaran Kutty Marar for Thayambaka (Kerala), Govind Ram Nirmalkar for Nacha (Chhattisgarh), Heera Das Negi for mask making (Himachal Pradesh) and Prafulla Karmakar for traditional puppetry (West Bengal) have also been chosen.

Nandini Ramani and Arun Kakade will receive the Akademi Award 2012 for overall contribution/scholarship in performing arts.

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