T. H.Vikku Vinayakram, ghatam maestro, has been chosen for the inaugural Yagnaraman Life Time achievement award and vocalist Saketharaman and dancers Surupa Sen and Bijayini Satpathy (Odissi) for Yagnaraman award of Excellence for the year 2008.

The awards have been instituted by Sri Krishna Gana Sabha, Chennai, in memory of the late R.Yagnaraman, general secretary from 1956-2007. In this connection Yagnaraman music fest 2008 is being held between June 30 and July 6. The highlight was ‘Sapthaakshara,’ the music ensemble on June 30 by T.H. Vikku Vinayakram.

Also on the agenda were the jugalbandi concerts by Lalgudi G.J.R.Krishnan (violin) and Ustad Shahid Parvez (sitar); Rajendra Gangani (kathak) and Prathibha Prahlad (Bharathanatyam); R.K.Srikantan (vocal) and N.Ravikiran (Chitraveena).The Life Time Achievement award carries a gold medallion, a citation and a purse of Rs.50,000 and will be presented to a senior artist every year. The Yagnaraman Award of Excellence carries a gold medallion, a citation and a purse of Rs.15,000, and is presented to young artist of merit.

The awards, sponsored by Chandra Sriram of Malaysia by endowment, will be conferred by Seshasayee, Managing Director, Ashok Leyland, who will also deliver the valedictory address on Sunday, July 6.