Music develops us emotionally, intellectually and spiritually: L Subramaniam

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Trained in classical Carnatic music tradition and Western classical music, violinist, composer and conductor Dr. L Subramaniam believes understanding other musical systems can be a great window to acquaint oneself to different cultures. “And that goes a long way in ensuring mutual respect, harmony as well as happiness among people,” he tells IANS.

The violin virtuoso, who gave his first public performance at the age of six, and has almost single-handedly ‘introduced’ violin to Indian musical sensibilities has been since 1975 doing solos across the world.

The artist, who released two videos on August 15 – ‘Youth Anthem’, featuring Kavita Krishnamurti and Shaan, and the National Anthem for the Ministry of Culture, says, “I am also working on the Mahatma Symphony to celebrate the 75th year of India’s Independence. It will be performed with a symphony orchestra & choir.”

A strong believer in introducing children to music early on, he believes that the same will always enrich young minds. “I have always felt that music is very essential for emotional, intellectual, spiritual and philosophical development of a person.”

The artist, who started the Lakshminarayana Global Music Festival (LGMF) in 1992, to honour the memory of his father Professor V. Lakshminarayana, stresses that besides continuing the music festival globally, they are also planning to bring in more youngsters and give them a global platform to showcase their talent.

“LGMF is also involved in education through the Lakshminarayana Global Centre of Excellence to educate and provide recognized degrees to the students in BA, MA and Ph.D. programs focusing on a more practical approach to music. We have been a bridge between the gurukul system and the university education system,” says Subramaniam, who studied medicine at Madras Medical College.

Talk to him about his children Ambi and Bindu, who have a band that blends western components with Indian classical music, and he asserts, “It’s always a pleasure to know your children are continuing the legacy of the family. I hope and pray Bindu & Ambi take both performance and music education to a higher level.”

Subramaniam, who has also composed film scores for movies including ‘Salaam Bombay’, ‘Mississippi Masala’ besides being the featured violin soloist in ‘Little Buddha’ and ‘Cotton Mary’ was recently part of HCL Concerts’ ‘Transcendence: Music for the mind’. Stressing that Indian culture, one of the oldest in the world, must be preserved and promoted for the future generations to come. he says, “I hope more organisations like HCL come forward to promote our culture.”

Talk to him about the lockdowns, and he says that the initial period proved to be quite sad as he lost a lot of friends and great musicians owing to the pandemic. He adds, “We took strength from music and created audio/video projects without going to the studio and by using the technology available to us at home. We managed to bring out a lot of videos with artists from different parts of the world. The first digital LGMF also took place in January 2021, which featured major artists from all over the world. I also managed to finish books which will be very useful for music education, especially for graduate and post-graduate students. “

But is he missing live performances? “Of course, live experience can never be replaced. When you perform in a major concert hall for different audiences, what you derive from the audience responses is indescribable. Not to mention the auditorium acoustics.”

(Sukant Deepak can be reached at sukant.d@ians.in)

–IANS

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