The second annual Oottukkadu Venkata Kavi Aradhana was presented by Krishna Kalakshetra of ISKCON Bangalore on September 20, 2009 in association with The International Foundation for Carnatic Music (IFCM).
Oottukkadu Venkata Kavi, who is said to have lived between 1700 and 1765 in the present-day state of Tamil Nadu, was one of the pioneering composers of Indian classical Carnatic music. Of his hundreds of compositions in Sanskrit, Tamil and Marathi, over 500 are available. His compositions reveal his complete mastery over the science and art of music in all of its aspects – melody, rhythm as well as poetical and scholarly lyrics saturated with deep devotion. He is believed to have received initiation from Lord Krishna Himself, as asserted in one of his Tamil compositions.
The Aradhana event began with invocation prayers by students of the IFCM, Bangalore Chapter. The event was inaugurated by Sri Tiru Dasa – Director of Krishna Kalakshetra, Chitravina N Ravikiran and Vidushi Smt Neela Ramgopal.
Sri Tiru Dasa spoke of Venkata Kavi’s devotion to Kaliya Nartana Krishna in Oottukkadu and his contribution to the world of music.
The inaugural function was followed by a ghosthi ganam (group singing) of the Saptaratna Kritis with Chitravina N Ravikiran. It saw participation from Vidushi Neela Ramgopal’s Neelambari (Bangalore) and Vidushi Sukanya Prabhakar’s Surabhi Gana Kala Mandira (Mysore). Sri Chaitanya Kumar on the flute and Sri Sudarshan on the mridangam gave support to the rendition.
This was followed by a concert by Vidushi Smt Sudha Ragunathan, featuring well known compositions of Venkata Kavi and showcasing some unique features seen in his works. She was accompanied by Sri V.L. Sudarshan, Tiruvarur Sri Vaidyanathan and Sri Raman.
The above performances brought out the musical genius of Venkata Kavi, which blends wisdom and scholarship with soulful emotion.
The musicians were honored by Sri Chanchalapathi Dasa – Vice President of ISKCON Bangalore and Sri Tiru Dasa.