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Sankara Iyer has worked to bring to light the music of Gopalakrishna Bharati and Arunachala Kavirayar. This is the first time his works are being made available in book form

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Read Sankara Iyer concert review

The Hindu review of a Sankara Iyer Tiruppugazh concert


Tanjavur Sankara Iyer
now in print

A living composer, sung by several greats over the last few decades, finally gets published

Tanjavur Sankara Iyer's compositions are finally available in print. The International Foundation for Carnatic Music, run by the Ravikiran Foundation of India, has taken the initiative to publish the book, simply called Vidwan Tanjavur Sankara Iyer's Compositions, and will release it at Shastri Hall, Luz, Chennai, on June 15, 2001.

"He is a great musician and the seniormost among today's composers," says Chitravina Ravikiran. "Many of his kritis have been rendered by vidwans over the last few decades."

R Venugopal of Spencer will do the honours at a ceremony beginning 6 p.m., and hand over the first copy to T R Subramaniam. Dwarakanath of The Hindu will preside. Nadaswara vidwan Injikkudi E M Subramaniam plays for an hour from 5 p.m.

For those who would also like to listen to the composer, there's good news. Sankara Iyer will sing with M S Anantaraman and K V Prasad.

"This is the first time his works are being made available in book form and it includes many popular compositions like Ranjanimala, Geetavadayanatana, Muruga tirumal maruga and Mahadeva shiva shambho," says Ravikiran. Some rare pieces also find a place in the book.

Sankara Iyer was born on January 14, 1924, in Togamarai, a village in Trichy district. His father, Venkatesa Iyer (a Tamil scholar and a harikatha vidwan) and his mother Kuppaluammal were his early musical influences. His uncle Krishna Iyer gave him musical lessons throughout his schools days. To his good luck, the headmaster of his school was also a harikatha performer. Sattur Krishna Iyengar taught him for and so did the great Tiger Varadachariar. Later in life, he was principal of Tamil Isai College, Devakottai. He also taught at College of Carnatic Music, Chennai, and Shanmukhananda Sabha Music School, Mumbai.

M L Vasanthakumari, D K Jayaraman and T V Sankaranarayanan, among other big musicians, are known to have taken pleasure in singing Sankara Iyer's compositions on stage.

Vasantha Iyer

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