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`A momentous occasion for the music fraternity'

Staff Reporter

Granddaughter receives `Sangeeta Saraswathi' award on behalf of D.K. Pattammal



ANOTHER HONOUR: Nityashree Mahadevan receiving the Sangeeta Saraswathi award on behalf of her grandmother, D.K. Pattammal, from Guruji Viswanath in Bangalore on Sunday. — Photo: K Murali Kumar

BANGALORE: Though the audience was a bit disappointed that the doyenne of Carnatic music D.K. Pattammal did not turn up, her granddaughter, Nityashree Mahadevan, seemed to have filled up the gap in what she termed as "a moment of celebration."

This was the scene at the Chowdiah Memorial Hall here on Sunday, when the veteran vocalist was conferred with "Sangeeta Saraswati" award.

The award was presented by Guruji Viswanath, founder of Manava Seva Kendra, on the occasion of his 54th birthday. This was the fourth consecutive year that the kendra was giving the award. Earlier it was given to M.S. Subbulakshmi and M. Balamurali Krishna.

From the beginning, the atmosphere was with serene with Sriram Parthasarathy rendering the kritis of Tyagaraja, Muttuswamy Dikshitar, and Shama Shastri.

It was clear that the crowd wanted to have a glimpse of the aged singer, and when it was learnt that she was not to come, the disappointment was apparent.

When Nityashree Mahadevan received the award in the form of a gold plaque and Rs. 25,000, she became emotional and said: "I am overwhelmed... I am short of expressions. It is indeed a rare privilege to receive the award on behalf of my grandmother and also be a part of Guruji's birthday celebrations."

Ms. Mahadevan said: "This is a moment that I will cherish for a long time. It is a matter of pride for me, not only for being her granddaughter, but also her disciple. It is a momentous occasion for the music fraternity."

Her grandmother, Ms. Mahadevan said, was best suited for the award. Switching to Tamil, she said: "My grandmother has been blessed by Goddess Saraswathi. I consider her interpretation of ragas as divine and follow it blindly." She recalled that it was on the same day 60 years ago that her grandmother was conferred with "Gana Saraswati" award by Tiger Varadachar in Chennai.

The audience enjoyed the hour-long concert of Ms. Mahadevan, wherein she sang one of the compositions of Guruji Viswanath.

Earlier, Guruji spoke about the contribution of Ms. Pattammal and said that she was a person "who lives in music and music lives in her."

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