Sri Krishna Gana Sabha conferred the ‘Sangeetha Choodamani’ title on Nagaswaram artiste Injikudi E.M. Subramaniam here on Monday.

Accepting the award at the 26 Pongal Nagaswara Vizha that was inaugurated at the Sabha, Mr. Subramaniam was overcome with emotion. “I am accepting this as a gesture of encouragement. I began performing in the sabha in 1983,” said Mr. Subramaniam, who dedicated the award to his parents and guru. Inaugurating the festival, Madras High Court judge V. Ramasubramanian shared anecdotes about the Nagaswaram and artistes.

Recalling an anecdote involving Nagaswaram artiste T.N. Rajarathinam Pillai, he said the legend regarded a common man’s appreciation of his music as the best recognition of his talent.

Speakers also highlighted the need to keep alive the legacy of nagaswaram players through fests dedicated exclusively to instrumental music. Musicologist B.M. Sundaram, who presented the award comprising a gold medal, citation and cash prize of Rs.1 lakh, said Krishna Gana Sabha was a pioneer in conducting the fest to encourage Nagaswaram artists. He lauded Mr. Subramaniam for his exceptional talent.

The Sabha’s president Nalli Kuppuswamy Chetty and general secretary Y. Prabhu also spoke. The four-day fest kicked off with a concert by E.M. Subramaniam.

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