T.M. Krishna (Carnatic Vocal) - March 16, 2009
T.M.Krishna is one of the leading vocalists in the field of Carnatic music and has been performing for the last 20 years. It has been said that he had started to sing even before he could string a sentence together. By the age of 6, Krishna had started his music lessons under Vidwan Sri Seetharama Sharma, continuing for 18 years. He also had special training in Ragam Thanam Pallavi from Sri Chengalpet Ranganathan, and 7 years of advanced training under one of the doyens of Carnatic music, Sangita Kalanidhi Dr. Semmangudi Srinivasa Iyer. Since his first public concert at the age of 12, there has been no looking back.
T.M. Krishna is viewed in the music world as a bastion of pure and uncompromising classical music. Apart from being one of the leading performers of Carnatic music today, Krishna is deeply prolific in his energy to contribute to promoting research on Carnatic music, in its popularization across all sections of society, and is also a much sought after teacher and has students from across the globe, conducting workshops in prestigious institutions such as Harvard University, IIT Madras and IIM Bangalore. In his numerous dynamic endeavors, he has collaborated with numerous musicians and scholars. Krishna has also released over 30 albums, including live concerts and thematic albums from leading labels like HMV and Music Today. The highlight of Krishna’s musical journey so far has been the fact that he has performed at several prestigious festivals across the world. Numerous awards and recognitions have also come his way, notably the Bismillah Khan Puraskar from Sangeet Natak Akademi in 2007.
Priyadarshini Govind (Bharatnatyam) - March 16, 2009
Priyadarsini Govind is one of the foremost Bharatanatyam dancers among the current generation. Trained by two stalwarts, Kalaimamani S.K. Rajarathnam Pillai and Padma Bhushan Smt. Kalanidhi Naryanan, Priyadarsini has imbibed this art form from the best. With her natural aptitude for abhinaya coupled with her passion and dedication to her art, Priyadarsini has become a flag bearer for Smt. Kalanidhi’s padam repertoire. Priyadarsini’s nritta or pure dance is intense and vigorous. A dancer known for her adherence to tradition, Priyadarsini manages to seamlessly blend new choreography with the traditional, thereby gently redefining the boundaries of Bharatanatyam repertoire.
Priyadarsini gave her maiden performance ('arangetram') in 1974, and since then has been performing in all the major centers in India and abroad. In her career spanning two decades, Priyadarsini has performed in prestigious venues all over India and the globe.
Bombay Jayashri (Carnatic Vocal) - March 17, 2009

When music seeps into the hearts of rasikas without themselves perceiving it, then it can be said to have served its ethereal purpose. For sangita’s tranquil delights lie hidden in the depths of the heart, waiting to be activated by a sensitive artiste like Bombay Jayashri Ramnath. Her sensitivity is rooted in tenderness, stimulating music and music, in turn, lending itself to contemplation. …states a renowned critic in The Hindu.

Born into a family of musicians with rich lineage and steeped in pedigree music, Bombay Jayashri Ramnath represents the fourth generation of music practitioners in her family. Jayashri has been groomed under the guidance of the legend Shri Lalgudi G Jayaraman and Smt T R Balamani. Jayashri, today not only bears the torch of the Lalgudi tradition, but has also evolved a distinct style of her own.

With a career extending over two decades, Jayashri is today among the most sought after Carnatic musicians. The myriad aficionados, spanning generations, that throng her concerts would bear ample testimony to this.

Her work has won her the acclaim of prestigious institutions in the form of prestigious awards such as the Sangeetha Choodamani and Nadabhooshanam.Jayashri’s repertoire of meditative music and rare poetry are best experienced through her compositions in her albums. She has also composed music for dance ballets and documentaries.

Leela Samson (Bharatnatyam) - March 17, 2009

Leela Samson received the impulses for her growth as a dancer from Kalakshetra, the College of Arts in Chennai, Tamil Nadu. She adheres to the mould of the Kalakshetra technique yet has grown out of its binding, believing as she does that adherence to any school is a point of reference only. She is however deeply influenced by Rukmini Devi, the founder of that institute and its philosophy.Leela joined Kalakshetra in 1961. She left the institute in 1975 as one of its leading dancers. Rukmini Devi’s passing away in February 1986, led to the creation of the Kalakshetra Foundation, on whose first board she served as a member for a three year term.

In 1975, Leela joined the Sriram Bharatiya Kala Kendra, Delhi and started a department of bharata natyam there. She left the institute in 1990, and from then on for the next fifteen years she taught privately in the tradition of the guru-shishya parampara and trained several dancers who have subsequently graced the Delhi stage with their particular sense of grace, knowledge and adherence to the best traditions of the Kalakshetra bani or school.

As a dancer, her seemingly understated delineation conceals a powerful and inspired inner source, which gradually unfolds before the viewer. She is a virtuoso performer and sensitive interpreter of the nuances of this form. She enjoys the reputation of being a dancer who has excellent form in nritta and who has sensitive abhinaya, as well. Leela has travelled extensively and performed at leading festivals of dance. She is widely acclaimed as a leading soloist of the bharata natyam style of dance. For thirty years she held the stage in Delhi both as a dancer and as a teacher, as a writer and as a choreographer of substance.