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Musician R. K Srikantan honoured with award

Special Correspondent
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“His music is fit for the gods”

Apollo Hospitals Managing Director Preetha Reddy presents the ‘Sathguru Thyagaraja Hamsadhwani Award' to vocalist R.K. Srikantan in Chennai on Sunday. — PHOTO: R. SHIVAJI RAO.
Apollo Hospitals Managing Director Preetha Reddy presents the ‘Sathguru Thyagaraja Hamsadhwani Award' to vocalist R.K. Srikantan in Chennai on Sunday. — PHOTO: R. SHIVAJI RAO.

Veteran musician R.K. Srikantan was honoured with the first ‘Sathguru Thyagaraja Hamsadhwani Award' at a function here on Sunday. The award has been instituted in memory of industrialist, philanthropist and patron of the arts P. Obul Reddy and his wife Gnanamba.

Giving away the award that included a plaque and purse of Rs.1.5 lakh, Apollo Hospitals Managing Director Preetha Reddy recalled her days as a young bride in the Obul Reddy family, when she heard her mother-in-law render the Pancharatnas.

Mr. Srikantan is a performer and teacher who had imbibed the qualities of Saint Thyagaraja, Ms. Reddy said.

‘Cleveland' V.V. Sundaram referred to Mr. Obul Reddy as a generous patron of arts. It was only appropriate that Mr. Srikantan whose “music is fit for gods” was honoured with the award, he said.

“A real upasaka”

Musician T.V. Gopalakrishnan said Mr. Srikantan is a “real upasaka whose music has been inspiring all the time”. Violinist M. Chandrasekharan said his association with Mr. Srikantan began in 1955 and he continues to accompany Mr. Srikantan. “Good music can be very refreshing and can heal. I wish our music retains that spirit forever,” he said.

Mr. Srikantan in his acceptance speech said, “The award is inspiring and I am charged with emotion. The purpose of music is obliteration of individuality and maximum integration of the individual into the hierarchy of the masters and scholars. Music in its purest and legitimate form can be used for upliftment of humanity, refinement of humans and elevation of souls. That was the sacred mission of Thyagaraja.”

He said he was increasingly involved in and dedicated to music. “It is a passion, it invigorates and rejuvenates my life,” he said.

Hamsadhwani President Ramnath S. Mani and secretary, R. Sundar participated.

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