Top U.S. honours for Aruna Sairam
It was a concert-cum-felicitation ceremony organised by Shri Vari Foundation in New York.
Photo: Ramesh Ramanathan
Feted: Mayor Harry Anand and Luis Castro of New York City Council present New York City Proclamation to Aruna Sairam.
The U.S. national flag was flown atop the Capitol building and handed over to Aruna Sairam and a special Congressional proclamation recognising her musical contribution was issued by the U.S. House of Representatives at a function held in New York.
It was a concert-cum-felicitation ceremony organised on August 16 by Shri Vari Foundation, an organisation to promote spirituality, music and dance, at Francis Lewis Auditorium in Queens, New York.
An array of distinguished personalities showered praise on Aruna Sairam for her yeoman service to India by unifying the different linguistic and regional cultures.
Mayor Harry Anand of Laurel Hollow, New York, the only elected Mayor of Indian-origin in the State of New York, presented the special U.S. Congress proclamation and the U.S. national flag on behalf of U.S. Congressman Nick Lampson (22nd District Texas) and Congressman Christopher Shays (4th District Connecticut) both of whom could not make it to New York.
Mayor Anand described Aruna Sairam as a legend. She has performed at Le Theatre de la Ville in Paris, Carnegie Hall in New York, the Presidential Palace in New Delhi, and the Festival of World Sacred Music in Morocco.
In the parchment
The parchment from Stephen T. Ayers, acting Architect of the Capitol in Washington, says the U.S. flag was flown over the Capitol in honour of South India’s most celebrated classical vocalist to commemorate her concert for Shri Vari Foundation in New York. In his message read out on the occasion, Congressman Shays described Aruna Sairam as one of the most renowned and beloved representatives of Carnatic vocal music. Hiram Monserrate, Member, New York City Council read out a special proclamation issued by the New York City Council to honor Aruna Sairam’s multi faceted musical journey.
Mr. George Abraham, Chief Technology Officer, Pension Funds, United Nations, Dr. Ajay Gondane, Deputy Consul General of India and Mr. Albert Chelladurai, president of New York Tamil Sangam, felicitated Aruna Sairam.
Accompanied by Tiruvarur Vaidyanathan on the mridangam and Vittal Ramamurthy on the violin Aruna Sairam presented a vocal concert. Prakaash M Swami, founder-president of Shri Vari Foundation, welcomed the gathering. Veera Kumar, trustee of the foundation, proposed a vote of thanks.
On August 15, the Consul General of New York, Ambassador Neelam Deo honoured Aruna Sairam in the grand ballroom of the Consulate General of India during the Independence Day celebrations. Aruna Sairam sang Vaishnava Janatho to enthral the Indian-Americans and PIOs gathered at the Consulate.
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