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Music director L. Vaidyanathan dead

Special Correspondent

Elder brother of the violin duo, L. Shankar and L. Subramaniam



L. Vaidyanathan

CHENNAI: L. Vaidyanathan, music director of yesteryear and Kalaimamani awardee, died on Saturday morning. He was 65.

The elder brother of the renowned violin duo, L. Shankar and L. Subramaniam, he apprenticed under music director G.K. Venkatesh during his early years. He studied music under the tutelage of his father V. Lakshminarayana Iyer, as did his other two violinist brothers. He composed music for over 150 movies in different languages.

He went on to score the music for movies, including the Kamal Hassan starrer, Pesum Padam, a silent movie in which the background score played an important role. Among his other famous films include director Hariharan's `Ezhavathu Manithan,' which introduced actor Raghuvaran. This award-winning movie's music set the lyrics of Bharatiyar's songs to much appreciated tunes. He also composed music for `Marupakkam,' a film starring Sivakumar that went on to win four national awards. His lesser-known work is probably the popular, haunting title track of R.K. Narayan's `Malgudi Days' directed by Shanker Nag and serialised on Doordarshan. Later, he experimented with fusion, striding Western and traditional Indian genres, even dabbling with far-Eastern melodies to create albums that were popular across the world. He has also performed as a violin trio with his brothers. The Tamil Nadu Government recognised his contributions to the field of films and music by bestowing him its award for artistes — the Kalaimamani Award — in 2003.

In addition to family and friends, personalities from the field of film music, among them Ilayaraja, S.P. Balasubramaniam and Chitra, condoled his death. He is survived by his wife Chenjulakshmi and two sons L.V. Ganesan and L.V. Muthukumarasamy. The cremation was performed on Saturday.

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