The South Indian Cultural Association (SICA) is organising its 48th Annual Festival of Music & Dance from 10th to 16th March, at the Ravindra Bharathi auditorium. The week-long festival will feature several renowned artistes such as violinists Lalgudi G J R Krishnan & Lalgudi Vijayalakshmi, flautist Shashank, dancer Kala Krishna, and vocalists S Sowmya, O S Arun, Maharajapuram Srinivasan and Madurai T N Seshagopalan.
Today, the 3rd day, S Sowmya will be performing a Carnatic vocal recital. She will be supported by R K Sriram Kumar on the violin and Neyveli R Narayanan on the mridangam. Born and brought up in a traditional South Indian family, Soumya had her initial tutelage in music from her father Dr. Srinivasan, a chemical engineer. Later she was fortunate to be taken under the wings of Sangeetha Kalanidhi Dr. S Ramanathan, an exemplary musician and an esteemed musicologist. Her musical instincts were further honed by T Muktha, of the legendary Brinda-Muktha duo.
In pursuit of her musical career, she gave up her research at IIT Chennai. She is a rank-holder for B A in Indian Music, and a gold medalist for M A in Music, from the University of Madras. She is a regular performer and an A-grade artiste in the All-India Radio (AIR) and Doordarshan, Madras. She has conducted lecture-demonstration programs sponsored by SPICMACAY and YACM (Madras), and in various universities & organizations in India and abroad.
Sowmya has visited USA, Canada, Australia, Hong Kong, Singapore, New Zealand, Sri Lanka, Malaysia, United Kingdom, France and Oman for concert tours. She has been conferred upon several awards by the Madras Music Academy, such as the Pankajam Rajam Award in 1987, the D K Pattammal Award in 1988, the T V Subba Rao Award in 1989, the G Ramakrishna Iyer Award in 1994 and the Srirangam Gopalaratnam Award in 1997 & 2005, in addition to the Rajaji Tambura Prize and the Annamalai Vallal Prize from the Tamil Isai Sangam, Chennai, in 1980 & 1983, and the 6-year Cultural Talent Scholarship for Instrumental Music (Veena), by the Dept. of Culture, Govt. of India, New Delhi (at the age of 10).
SICA was founded in 1959 by Dewan Bahadur Aramuda Iyengar, the Finance Minister of Hyderabad's Nizam and a great patron of Carnatic music. The association has since organised more than 1,000 concerts. It has provided a basic platform for upcoming artistes like U P Raju and Nagamani, Mandolin Srinivas and the Malladi Brothers. It conducts workshops, felicitates artistes, and provides both moral and financial support to upcoming artistes. Dr S Chakravarthy, IAS, former Chief Secretary to the Govt. Of AP, is the current President of the association, and R Chakrapani is the General Secretary.
Entry is by season tickets of Rs. 300 per head for members. For others, it is Rs. 500 per head. Please contact R Chakrapani at 2742-5374/98491-24675 or V Ramachandran at 92461-61420 for further details.