One of the most
sought after Carnatic classical
vocalists of today,P Unnikrishnan was born on 9 th July 1966 to K
Radhakrishnan and Dr Harini Radhakrishnan. The family home, Kesari
Kuteeram, was a well known landmark of Madras city, with great
grandfather Dr KN Kesari being an eminent Ayurvedic physician and the
promoter of the popular Telugu women's magazine Gruhalakshmi . The home
was known to be a beehive of artistes and singers with eminent
personalities in the field often coming home to perform and also be
rewarded by Dr Kesari. It is no surprise therefore that Unni should
have taken to the arts at an early age. Cricket was however his first
passion and it was his ambition to make it to the national level. But
his mother had noticed his talents in music and enrolled him for
classical music lessons under Sri VL Seshadri. Studying at the Asan
balanced his interests in music and cricket and
progressed on both fronts. He graduated from the Vivekananda College,
Madras University in 1987 with a B Com degree. Music tutelage was now
under Dr S Ramanathan, the well known musician's musician. Unni also
graduated in cricket to become a part of the Tamil Nadu Senior Division
League as a top order batsman and wicket keeper.
began coming in from 1990 onwards with the first concert happening at
Palghat. His facile voice and musical talents were noted and with that
he joined the league of young Turks such as Vijay Siva and Sanjay
Subrahmanyan to bring back the fans to Carnatic Music. Cricket had to
sadly be left behind though he continues to be a life member of the
Tamil Nadu Cricket Association. Tutelage in music continued after
Sangita Kalanidhi Dr Ramanathan's time with Calcutta Sri KS
Krishnamurthy and later Smt Savitri Sathyamurthy as Gurus. He also
attended a six month training programme on the Veena Dhanammal bani
conducted by Sangita Kalanidhi T Brinda and Sangita Kalanidhi T
Viswanathan. Unni did his General Law and Post Graduate Diploma in
Personnel Management and Industrial Relations and joined Parrys
Confectionery Limited where he worked from 1991 to 94. By then he had
become a very busy concert artiste. It was in 1994 that he received his
first film offer and the very first songs, ‘Ennavalae'
and ‘Uyirum Neeye' (Pavitra) bagged him the National Award
Best Male Playback Singer. He can be credited with the bridging of the
classical music – film music divide which had been last
with great success by KJ Yesudass.
Unni then bade goodbye to a corporate career and became a full time
musician. He married Priya, who is trained in Bharatanatyam and
Mohiniattam, in November 1994 and the couple is blessed with two
children, Vasudev Krishna, born on 27 th May 1997 and Uttara, born on
11 th June 2004. Unni remains a top ranking musician and still finds
time to train under Sri PS Narayanaswami and Prof. SR Janakiraman. He
is an A grade artiste with the All India Radio. Interest in sports
continues with his finding time to play tennis and swim and as often as
possible at the Madras Cricket Club where he is a member.
more information and sample music clips of the
artist please visit www.unnikrishnan.com
on 19th Feb
1975, Kannan hails from a family of musicians. Although he holds a post
graduate degree in commerce, from the Madras University, music has been
his raison’d’etre. Living up to his father,
Bhooshanam, Sri Embar Sadagopan’s dream to see his son as a
concert artist, Kannan took to the violin at the tender age of 6. He
had his initial training in Carnatic music under Sri Subbanna
Bhagavatar and Vittal Ramamurthy and in western classical music under
music director, Diwakar master. He then continued his formal training
in the violin under
Acknowledged as a violinist par excellence, Kannan is an A- Grade with
the All India Radio, a recognition given only to top ranking artists.
Universally acclaimed as a violinist with extraordinary bowing quality
and remarkably sweet playing, his style is marked by clarity,
soulfulness and energy. Subbudu, the doyen among critics recognized
Kannan as a prized jewel of Carnatic music as early as 1991. He
remarked that Kannan’s music had the grace and ease of a
Violinists hold a unique pride of place in carnatic music. As concert
accompanists, they shoulder the twin responsibilities of perceiving the
mindsets of vocalists, anticipating, reproducing and blending in with
their music, even as they retain their individual identities.
Kannan’s uncanny flair in this aspect has made him one of the
most sought after accompanists in his time and he enthralls audiences,
the world over with his music.
more information and sample music clips of the
artist please visit www.embarkannan.com
Anantha R Krishnan
Anantha R. Krishnan
(Anand) A rare phenomenon in the world of music, Anand started his
musical journey on the mridangam, the principle drum of South Indian
music, the Carnatic tradition. As a child prodigy, Anand astounded the
Indian classical community with his performances. Since then, he has
cemented his position as a premier mridangam-ist of his generation,
carrying forth one of the greatest drumming traditions.
grandson and disciple
of arguably the greatest mridangam maestro, Shri. Palghat R. Raghu,
Anand started learning the fundamentals of the mridangam under his
uncle, Shri. R. Ramkumar and then began an official tutelage under his
grandfather at the age of five. He performed his first concert for
Prof. T. N. Krishnan, a Padma Bhushan, one of India's greatest civilian
qualifications, and, a few years later before reaching the age of
fifteen, he had the distinction of performing with a rare generation of
Carnatic stalwarts like: Shri. K.V. Narayanaswamy, Shri. M.S.
Gopalakrishnan, Dr. K.J. Yesudas, Shri. Nedunuri Krishnamurthy, Dr. N.
Ramani Shri. Mandolin Shrinivas among many others.
this period, he
received many awards from traditional organizations of Carnatic Music
in India. Most notably, he has won the categorical Best Mridangist
Prize from the Music Academy, Madras five times in six years. Also, he
was awarded the State of the Arts Award from the New Jersey government
twice in 1997-1998 as part of the National Endowment of the Arts'
effort to promote cultural awareness in the U.S.A.
A mridangist of
international repute, in 1999, he was invited to perform for the
millenium celebrations in Berlin, Germany at the Haus der Kulturen der
Welt and at the EXPO 2000 in Hanover. A year later, he performed at the
historic Sadler's Wells Indian Music Festival in London with legendary
vocalist, Padma Vibhushan Shri. M. Balamuralikrishna. Recently, he went
back to Germany at the invitation of Fred Frith, the British
experimental guitarist to perform for the seminal New Jazz Meeting for
SWR 2, a national radio station in Baden Baden. This record, called
"Clearing Customs" is now available on Intakt Records. In May of 2008,
he was a featured soloist in the Grammy nominated, Miles from India
tour, which premiered in Town Hall, NYC presenting Miles Davis's music
with Indian instrumentation featuring jazz legends: Ron Carter, Dave
Liebman Lenny White, Ndugu Chancler, and Pete Cosey.
Anantha is one of the few
Indian percussionists who has performed the music of American composers
Steve Reich, John Cage, James Tenney and others. On November 15, 2010,
he had the blessing for playing in Bhagavan Shri Satya Sai Baba's 85th
Birthday celebration. Academically, he holds a Bachelor of Arts in
Music and Philosphy from Dartmouth College and Master of Fine Arts in
Electronic Music from Mills College in Oakland, California.