Guru Rama Suresh : Nattuvangam
The art of conducting an Indian dance recital is known is as nattuvangam. The conductor is known as the nattuvanar. To provide the beat structure (Thalam) for the performance, the nattuvanar plays a small set of cymbals and recites Solkattu (spoken rhythmic patterns). Guru Rama Suresh learned Nattuvangam (the art of conducting a classical Indian dance recital) from mridangam maestro Karaikudi Krishnamurthy who hails from Kalakshetra.
Tiruvarur Girish: Lead Vocalist
Bharatanatyam is traditionally accompanied by a trained Carnatic (classical South Indian) vocalist. The lyrics of the music are sung by this artist as the performer interprets them through dance. Each song is set to a specific ragam (analogous to a key in Western music) and talam (analogous to a time signature). Girish will be singing compositions in various Indian languages, including, Tamil, Telugu, Hindi and Sanskrit.
Girish Surrender hails from the Legendary Veena Dhanammmal Family. He is a disciple of his grandmother Sangeeta Kalanidhi Smt. T Brinda of Dhanammal family. The lineage gets its name from the brilliant Dhannamal - Venai Vidhusi and musician par excellence' whose music genius has remained unsurpassed. Following the tradition have been the exceptional, Smt. T Brinda, Smt T Muktha, Padmavibhusan Smt T. Balasarswati and Dr T Viswanatham. These artists have been acknowledged world over for their supreme artistry and genius in the field of vocal, Dance and Flute.
Girish follows in the tradition and keeps alive the extensive family heritage. His maternal Grandmother Smt T. R. Anandavalli is a renowned artist as also his maternal uncle the world renowned Mridanga vidwan Kalaimamani Sri Tiruvarur Bakthavathsalam. Girish is the disciple of the renowned Sangeeta Vidhushi Smt. Vegavahini Vijayaraghavan, daughter of smt.T Brinda. Girish has also had the privilege of undergoing intensive and advanced training for 10 years under his grandmother Sangeeta Kalanidhi T. Brinda and Smt.Muktha.T. He has acquired an extensive repertoire of Padams and Jhavalis rare compositions, which are rarely otherwise heard.
He is also a graded artist from All India Radio (AIR) & doordarshan. Girish also plays the mridangam and has a fair knowledge of nattuvangam(Bharatantyam). Girish graduated from the University of Madras in 1998 with a Bachelors degree in Arts, Specializing in Caranatic Music. Girish has performed extensively in India and abroad. He was employed by Kuchipudi Arts academy as music teacher from 1998-2001 by Kuchipudi Dance legend Padmabhushan Dr.Vempatti Chinnsatyam. Girish has performed more than 20 concerts in France and Germany. He is a astana vidwan of Kanchi Kamakoti peetam, Kancheepuram. He also received "Gaana Ratna" award from Honourable Chief Minister of Goa in 2006.
Ramesh Ramalingappa: Mridangam - Percussion (Indian Drum)
This percussion instrument plays an indespensable role in the accompanying orchestra. It not only provides a structural rhythmic framework for the dancer to utilize, but also contributes intricate embellishments to the basic beats.
Ramesh Ramalingappa, with more than 3500 performances, is a master Mrudangam artist. He is the student of legendary percussion master Vasudeva Rao. Ramesh is versatile percussionist who can play more than 5 instruments. He holds a rank in Vidwath Exams and has awarded prestigeous Ananya Yuva Puraskar. He has accompanied major classical musicians and dancers since 1980's. Ramesh was a featured artist in Indian Dance music festivals such as Hampi Dance Festival, Mysore International Music Festival, The Royal Kadamba festival of dance and music and others. He is an "A" graded artist from All India Radio ‐ the National Radio station of India. He has accompanied famous musicians such as TV Gopalakrsihnan, MS Gopalakrishnan, Neyveli Santhana Gopalana, TV Shankaranarayana, RK Surya Narayana and others. Ramesh, with his percussion band "Nandi Talavadya", has toured European countries such as Holland, Germany and other countries. Ramesh is a highly sought after mrudangam artist in classical music, Indian dance and recording industry of Bangalore, India.
Madurai Srinivasan Kannan: Violin
The South Indian violin is almost identical to the Western violin, but differs from it in tuning and playing position. It is traditionally played, sitting cross-legged, with the scroll placed on the artist’s right ankle, the back of the violin resting on the artist’s left shoulder, thus giving the performer an unencumbered left hand with which to play.
Accomplished carnativ violinist M.S Kannan hails from a musical family .He is the son of well known Composer, mridangam artist Madurai T Srinivasan. Kannan had violin training from Kandadevi Chellam Iyengar & had advance d training from C.N Chandrashekar of All India Radio, Bangalore. Apart from being an accompanist, He is also a soloist. He is a B High grade artist of All India Radio, Chennai.
Kannan hold a bachelors degree from the Tamil Nadu Govt Music College. Kannan has accompanied all leading Bharathanatyam, Kuchipudi and Mohiniattam Dancers in India & Abroad. Kannan has been featured in orchestras of leading South Indian Cine Music Directors for Movies including South Indian Music Maestro Ilayaraja. He has also participated in All India Radio, Doordarshan and private Channels Recordings.
Raghavendrachar Elamarthi: Bamboo Flute
The pullanguzhal (bamboo flute) plays an integral role in Carnatic music and is distinctively different from the Western flute. It has eight finger holes, but is keyless. Therefore, it is the responsibility of the flutist to remain in tune with the other musicians. Mr. Elamarthi does this with great ease and skill.
Raghavendrachar started learning vocal music at a very young age from Smt Alakananda. With excellent foundation in Vocal music he learned to play the flute from Sri R. Thyagarajan who is the son of the legendary Flute Maestro Sangeetha Kalanidhi Dr N Ramani. Raghavendrachar gained recognition with his unique blowing techniques & was awarded with many accolades & awards from various prestigious organizations. Raghavendra has been awarded titles like "Venu Gana Mani" & Venu Ganan Rathna from Muisc organizations of India. Apart from being a solo artist, he plays for Bharathanatyam (South Indian Dance) progeams and Bhajans (Indian Devotional Songs). He has composed many Bharathnatyam repertoires like Jathi Swarams, Padams etc. Raghavendra has also worked in many commercials CD Productions as a Music Composer. He has been a Visiting Professor in the Tamil Nadu Government Music College & also worked as a Flute tutor at Chettinad Vidyashramam, & Kola Perumal Group of Schools. Raghavendra has served as the Secretary & Trustee of Triplicate Arts & Culture Trust, Rasarangam & Purandara Dasarangam. Raghavendra has been very successful as Indian Dance accompanist & is one of the sought after musicians in the field of classical dance and music in India.