About

Avasarala Kanyakumari Violinist, Teacher, Innovator

Padmashri Avasarala. Kanyakumari is a top ranking Carnatic violinist, her experience spanning over 50 years, is popular not only as a soloist and as an accompanist but also as an innovator and organizer of Carnatic instrumental ensembles, always retaining the core values of classicism in her creativity. Her music strictly adheres to the traditional form of Carnatic music. The hallmark of her music is her playing style, which closely resembles vocal music. This is justified by the importance she gives to the sahitya, her bowing, the raga delineation, the krithi selection in each concert, her pakka vadya (accompanist’s) selection. Yet, she does have a touch of novelty in her performances even while retaining her traditional touch. This is justified by the various ragas she has found and named herself. Not only has she created ragas, but she has also brought them to life by setting unfamiliar compositions to tune in these ragas. Her collection of 7 Annamacharya krithis which had almost gone into oblivion in seven ragas (Seshadri, Neeladri, Garudadri, Anjanadri, Vrishabhadri, Narayanadri and Venkatadri) which she herself has created is a testimony. This has been highly acclaimed by music scholars and critics.

Born in Vijayanagaram, Andhra Pradesh, India, A. Kanyakumari belongs to a family of musicians. Her parents Sri Avasarala Ramarathnam and Smt. Jayalakshmi encouraged her immensely to pursue music.A.Kanyakumari considers herself fortunate to be a sishya (disciple) of three legendary gurus, Sri Ivaturi Vijayeshwar Rao, Sri M. Chandrashekaran, and Dr M.L.Vasanthakumari. Kanyakumari owes her music career to her Adiguru (First guru) Sri Ivaturi Vijayeshwar Rao. But for him, she says, she would never have made this far. Till date A. Kanyakumari emphasizes the importance of the lessons taught by him to her, to her students. These practice lessons have also been incorporated in the CD tutorial created by her which is one of its kinds

The Kanya style

The journey with started with a strong foundation by great gurus and finely carved by them, A. Kanyakumari has meticulously, with sheer determination and hard work made it to the top, and she still remains the dominating lady violinist in the entire Carnatic Music Kingdom. During her proud journey through decades, she has continued to an ever shining diamond in many respects – a soloist, accompanist, and excellent teacher and a great innovator. It is worthwhile to hightlight here that, whilst she strictly adheres to the traditional form of carnatic music she has established here unique style, popularly known as the ‘Kanya Style’. The hallmark of her music is here playing style, which very closely resembles vocal music. It is this style of melodious playing and silken bowing closely resembles vocal music, captivating and melting down any audience. Listening to her sparkling brigas and sangathis, the music critic Mr. Subbudu compared her music to the ever glittering diamond stud in the nose ring of Goddess Kanyakumari. Her extensive experience, spanning more than 4 decades, combined with sharp acumen and fine sense of creativity has earned her a distinct place. She has absorbed the best out of her musical acquaintances and formed her own way of delivering music to the audience. Hence she succeeds in maintaining her originality and novelty in her every performance. Her peculiar bowing, her alapana and swara prasthara and her sangathis can only behold you wonderstruck and are beyond replication.Kanyakumari has a distinct and much appreciated style of playing, assimilating the best elements of her Gurus’ music and adding her own original ideas.

As an Artiste...

A.Kanyakumari is often described as a “scintillating soloist”. Kanyakumari made a solo concert tour of the USA in 1991. She was the first female artist to tour the USA. Besides, she has performed concerts in France, U.K, Mexico, Switzerland, Canada, Dubai, Malaysia, Singapore, Australia, Sri Lanka etc. She is a favorite of the overseas audience.

For a long long time, A Kanyakumari was a ‘most sought after accompanist’. She accompanied the legendary vocalist M.L.Vasanthakumari for nearly two decades, besides many other top ranking artistes like Dr. Ramani, Dr. S .Kalyanaraman, O.S. Thyagarajan, Sikkil Sisters etc. After establishing herself as a dynamic soloist, Kanyakumari now plays accompaniment to only Dr. Kadri Gopalnath (Saxophone exponent). Their concerts are acclaimed worldwide and among the most popular ones. She joined him in rallying many musicians to collect a fund of Rs. 6 lacs towards the ‘Kargil Relief Fund’.
Kanyakumari is a highly versatile artist. Every concert of hers is momentary and suited to match the audience’s taste. She decides her repertoire on the stage after judging the audience. Some of her concerts are full of brisk and high tempo compositions and some others have those slow numbers which are old and cherished by a niche audience. At the end of the concert, what you have is a wonderstruck and satisfied audience. She has fans spread across the globe with all praises for her. Her fans include her students, her accompanists, her listeners, critics, karnatik musicians, cine musicians, playback singers, music directors, her hosts and many more.

A Kanyakumari often recalls the way she was treated with utmost care, courtesy and affection by M L Vasanthakumari. She still carries the same rapport with all her accompanists.

As a Teacher...

A teacher affects eternity – he can never tell where his influence stops. Such is the impact of A.Kanyakumari in her yet another facet as a teacher. A Kanyakumari has students all over the world. All revere her as an idol and an icon of music. Her ever readiness, dedication, interest to teach and love for her students has made her undoubtedly the most sought after guru. Only she can explain how she finds the energy and time amidst her packed schedule to devote time for teaching! She has students not only for violin, but also for mandolin, veena, guitar and keyboard. As she follows the gayaki style, she sings to teach her students. And it is undoubtedly a treat to hear her sing. Her flawless sangathis keep lingering in a student’s mind even after years of it being taught. The time she invests in each student in bringing him/her up is commendable. How she trains a student in class and on stage is something noteworthy. She knows the talent and potential of every student and taps it accordingly. She is frank in expressing her views with her pupils. She selects her students and gives them the golden chance of performing next to her on the stage. This is the way she has nurtured and brought forward excellent violinists who are well known now in the field of Karnatik music. Few among them are Embar. S. Kannan (violin), Prasanna (guitar).She was a visiting professor in the University of SanFransisco, USA. Many of her students are recipients of the central government scholarship and some of them are winners of the All India Radio Annual competitions. She has been teaching for more than 25 years, developing and shaping up her students

The Innovator

As a novelty innovator, A.Kanyakumari has a strong desire to introduce innovations in to the common forms of stage music without compromising on traditional classicism. She has many successful innovations to her credit.

  • Vadhyalahari, a unique instrumental ensemble
  • Thristhai Sangamam, a confluence of octaves
  • Sathavadya Sammelan
  • VCD for violin lessons, the first of its kind
  • CricMusic, introducing carnatic music in cricket

 

Innovations

Cricket Music

Violin expert Kanyakumari always strives to create something new and unique. There are many things …

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Violin Lessons

Kanyakumari released a VCD with violin lessons, which is the first of its kind, to …

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Prashantham

Kanyakumari released an album title “Prashantham”  with an aim to reduce mental stress and bring …

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Violin Ensembles

Since 1993, till recently, Kanyakumari has conducted many Carnatic Music ensembles involving 25, 50, 75 …

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Thristhai Sangamam

In 1990, A.Kanyakumari devised and conducted “Thristhai Sangamam” (Triple Octave Confluence), including 3 violins in …

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Vadhyalahari

The curtain rises, revealing to the audience the artistes of the evening. A lady with …

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Awards

- Awards -

  • Padmashri Award

    Govt. of India

    Recepient of the award in the year 2015

  • Sangeet Natak Akademi Award

    Govt. of India

    Received from the hands of the then President of India, Dr. Sri A.P.J. Abdul Kalam

  • Ganga Devi Achievement Award

    State Govt. of Andhra Pradhesh

    Received from the hands of the former Prime Minister Of India, Late Sri P.V. Narasimha Rao garu

  • Ugadi Puraskaram

    Govt. of Andhra Pradesh

    Received from The Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh

  • 'A-Top' Artiste

    All India Radio

    Has been a top ranked artiste of the AIR for the last 20 years

  • Badam Appa Rao Memorial Award

    Vishakapatnam

    Received the Memorial Award & Gold Medal

  • Lifetime Achievement Award

    'Shanmukhapriya' & 'Sarvani Sangeeta Sabha

    Conferred jointly by two sabhas of repute in Chennai in 2014

  • Sri Jayendra Saraswathi National Eminence Award

    Award in Fine Arts

    Received on 15th August 2013 from the hands of Sri Jayendra Saraswathi Swamy of Kanchi in Mumbai

  • Talented guru Award

    Hamsadhwani Sabha

    Received the talented guru award in the guru sishya series from Hamsadwani, Chennai

  • Wisdom International Star of India

    Wisdom International INc.

  • Honorary Citizenship

    State of Maryland, USA

  • Limca Book of Records 2004

    Received in 2004

    For her achievement in playing Violin non- stop for 29 hours

  • TTK Award

    Music Academy, Chennai

- Titles -

  • Ranjini-Sangeetha KalaSagara

    Sriranjani Sabha, Chennai

  • Vani Kala Subhakara

    Sri Thyaga Brahma gana Sabha, Chennai

  • Nadha Kalanidhi

    Sree Shanmukhananda Sabha, New Delhi

  • Vayuleena Vidwanmani

    by His Holiness Sri Jayendra Saraswathi Swamigal

  • Sangeetha Kala Nipuna

    Chennai

    Received from the prestigious institution "Mylapore Fine Arts", Chennai

  • Sangeeta Choodamani

    Chennai

    Received from the prestigious 'Sri Krishna Gana Sabha', Chennai

  • Nada Neerajanam

    Tirupati Devasthanam, Tirupati

    Committee Member of TTD Channel, Tirupati Devasthanam, Tirupati

  • Sangeeta Kalaasaagara

    Vishakapatnam

    Received from a prestigious Fine Arts Sabha - 'Visakha Music Academy', Visakhapatnam

  • Sangeeta Kalasagara

    Secunderabad

    Received from a prestigious Fine Arts Sabha - 'Kalasagaram', Secunderabad

  • Asthana Vidushi

    from Many aacharya peetams

    Sringeri Sharada Peetham, Ahobila Mutt & Avadootha Dutta Peetham, Thirumala Tirupati Devasthanam, Sri Raghavendra Swamy Temple, Mantralayam

  • Sapthagiri Sangeetha Vidwanmani

    Thirupathy

    Received from Sri Thyagaraja Festival Committee, Tirupati

  • Dhanurveena Vidwanmani

    from Late Smt. M.S. Subbulakshmi

    Received from the hands of 'Bharat Ratna' Late Smt. M.S. Subbulakshmi, in the august presence of 'Padma Vibhushan' Dr. Sri M. Balamurali Krishna.

Media

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M.L.Vasanthakumari

M.L.VasanthaKumari, A.Kanyakumari, Mannargudi Easwaran, G.Harishankar

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M.L.VasanthaKumari, A.Kanyakumari, Mannargudi Easwaran, G.Harishankar

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Sangeetha Kalanidhi ML Vasanthakumari

Kanyakumari with her guru and mentor Sangeetha Kalanidhi ML Vasanthakumari

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Kanyakumari with her guru and mentor Sangeetha Kalanidhi ML Vasanthakumari

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Dr.N.Ramani

Kanyakumari accompanying Veteran Flautist Sangeetha Kalanidhi Sri N.Ramani

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Kanyakumari accompanying Veteran Flautist Sangeetha Kalanidhi Sri N.Ramani

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Bombay Sisters

Kanyakumari with Bombay Sisters Smt. Saroja and Smt. Lalitha at…

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Kanyakumari with Bombay Sisters Smt. Saroja and Smt. Lalitha at an award ceremony

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M.S.Subbalakshmi

Kanyakumari with Smt. M.S.Subbalakshmi and Sri Sadasivam

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Kanyakumari with Smt. M.S.Subbalakshmi and Sri Sadasivam

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Sudha Ragunathan

Kanyakumari sharing a light moment with Sangeetha Kalanidhi Smt. Sudha…

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Kanyakumari sharing a light moment with Sangeetha Kalanidhi Smt. Sudha Ragunathan

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Yanni

Kanyakumari in discussion with the world renowned Greek composer, keyboardist and…

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yanni

Kanyakumari in discussion with the world renowned Greek composer, keyboardist and pianist Yanni

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Kadri Gopalnath

Kanyakumari Accompanying Saxophone Maestro Sri Kadri Gopalnath

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Kanyakumari Accompanying Saxophone Maestro Sri Kadri Gopalnath

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Vadyalahari

Kanyakumari's Vadyalahari team (Nadaswaram, Violin and Veena)

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Kanyakumari’s Vadyalahari team (Nadaswaram, Violin and Veena)

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A Young Kanya

Kanyakumari, in her school days, leading a violin performance

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Kanyakumari, in her school days, leading a violin performance

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Vadhyalahari

Kanyakumari's Vadhyalahari ensemble with Sri Mudikondan Ramesh (Veena) and Sri…

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Kanyakumari’s Vadhyalahari ensemble with Sri Mudikondan Ramesh (Veena) and Sri Kodandaraman (nadaswaram) and Sri E.M.Subramaniam (Ghatam)

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100 Violins

Kanyakumari's monumental 100 violin ensemble

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Kanyakumari’s monumental 100 violin ensemble

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All Ladies Ensemble

Kanyakumari leading an all ladies ensemble

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Kanyakumari leading an all ladies ensemble

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25 Violins

A.Kanyakumari leading a 25 violin ensemble accompanied by Sri Patri…

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A.Kanyakumari leading a 25 violin ensemble accompanied by Sri Patri Sathish Kumar (mrudangam) and Sri Amruth (Khanjira)

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50 Violins

Kanyakumari leading a 50 violin ensemble

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Kanyakumari leading a 50 violin ensemble

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Embar S.Kannan

A.Kanyakumari with her senior disciple Kalaimamani Embar S.Kannan

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A.Kanyakumari with her senior disciple Kalaimamani Embar S.Kannan

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V.Sanjeev

Kanyakumari with her student V.Sanjeev

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Kanyakumari with her student V.Sanjeev

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Nishanth Chandran

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kanya-abishek

L.Ramakrishnan

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kanya-rajeev

Rajeev Mukundan

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kanya-vittal

Vittal Rangan

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Anusha Sreeram

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kanya-anuthama

Anuthama Murali

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Bombay V.Anand

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Students Rajesh, Dinesh, Anuthama

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Sangeeth Natak Academy Award

Receiving the Sangeet Natak Academy Award from former President Sri…

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Receiving the Sangeet Natak Academy Award from former President Sri APJ Abdul Kalam

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Tejasvi

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Padmashri Award

Receiving the Padmashri Award for the year 2015 from Hon…

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padmashri kanyakumari

Receiving the Padmashri Award for the year 2015 from Hon President of India Sri Pranab Mukherjee

Chandrababu Naidu Godavari

Felicitated by Chandrababu Naidu

Kanyakumari felicitated by Telengana CM Sri Chandra Babu Naidu during…

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Chandrababu Naidu Godavari

Kanyakumari felicitated by Telengana CM Sri Chandra Babu Naidu during the release of Godavari Ragam composition by Kanyakumari during the Pushkara Festival

Lifetime achievement Award BVB

Lifetime Achievement Award – BVB

Kanyakumari receving the Lifetime Achievement award from Bharatiya Vidhya Bhavan…

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Lifetime achievement Award BVB

Kanyakumari receving the Lifetime Achievement award from Bharatiya Vidhya Bhavan alongside Vocalist Sri Neyveli Santhanagopalan

Utsav Festival 2015

Utsav Festival 2015

Kanyakumari with the artistes of the Utsav Festival 2015, at…

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Utsav Festival 2015

Kanyakumari with the artistes of the Utsav Festival 2015, at Kennedy Center, Washington

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Kamalakiran, Pavani, Srikanth

With students V.Sanjeev, Kamalakiran, Pavani and Shrikanth at Utsav Festival 2015,…

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kiran

With students V.Sanjeev, Kamalakiran, Pavani and Shrikanth at Utsav Festival 2015, Kennedy Center, Washington DC

Sangeetha Vidhyanidhi

Sangeetha Vidhyanidhi

Receiving "sangeetha vidyanidhi" title from andhra music academy, visakhapatnam in…

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Sangeetha Vidhyanidhi

Receiving “sangeetha vidyanidhi” title from andhra music academy, visakhapatnam in the august presence of Governer of Andhra and eminent singer S.P.Balasubramaniam

Sangeetha Saraswathi

Sangeetha Saraswathi

Kanyakumari Avasarala being conferred upon Sangeetha Saraswathi title for her outstanding…

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Sangeetha Saraswathi

Kanyakumari Avasarala being conferred upon Sangeetha Saraswathi title for her outstanding and distinguished contribution to the propagation and preservation of this Divine Art of Music

All Disciples

All Disciples

Kanyakumari with many of her disciples - Embar Kannan, Rajeev,…

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All Disciples

Kanyakumari with many of her disciples – Embar Kannan, Rajeev, Srilakshmi Venkatramani, Anusha Shreeram, Durai Srinivasan, Priyamvadha, Sai Rakshit, Rangapriya, Sriranjani, Sundarrajan, Shradha Ravindran, Nandika, accompanied by Sri K.V.Prasad on mrudangam and Sri Kishore on percussion

Asthana Vidushi - Mantralayam

Asthana Vidushi – Mantralayam

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Asthana Vidushi - Mantralayam
Ivaturi Vijayeshwar Rao

Ivaturi Vijayeshwar Rao

Kanyakumari performing with her AdiGuru Sri Ivaturi VIjayeshwar Rao

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Ivaturi Vijayeshwar Rao

Kanyakumari performing with her AdiGuru Sri Ivaturi VIjayeshwar Rao

Chandrababu Naidu Godavari

Sangeetha Choodamani

Receiving the Sangeetha Choodamani Award from Sri Krishna Gana Sabha

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Chandrababu Naidu Godavari

Receiving the Sangeetha Choodamani Award from Sri Krishna Gana Sabha

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Kalaimamani Award

Receiving the Kalaimamani Award from Govt. of India

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Receiving the Kalaimamani Award from Govt. of India

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Golden Violin

Receiving the golden violin from Sri Shanmukananda sabha Mumbai

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Receiving the golden violin from Sri Shanmukananda sabha Mumbai

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TTK Award

Receiving the TTK Award from the Music Academy Madras from…

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Receiving the TTK Award from the Music Academy Madras from the hands of Sangeetha Kalanidhi Nedunuri Sri Krishnamurthy

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My Favourite Raga

Interview with Kanyakumari in THE HINDU on her favourite krithi…

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Interview with Kanyakumari in THE HINDU on her favourite krithi / raga

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Vadhyalahari review

Review of A.Kanyakumari's ensemble in Hamsadwani Sabha, Chennai

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Review of A.Kanyakumari’s ensemble in Hamsadwani Sabha, Chennai

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Satharagamalika Review

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Top 22 list of musicians

Kanyakumari featured in the list of top 22 musicians compiled…

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Kanyakumari featured in the list of top 22 musicians compiled by Sruthi Magazine

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Music for the millenium

Review of the Satha Vadhya Sammelan

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Review of the Satha Vadhya Sammelan

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Rotary Award

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Stupendous Skill

Review of Kanyakumari accompanying Mandolin U.Srinivas in U.K

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Review of Kanyakumari accompanying Mandolin U.Srinivas in U.K

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Spick and Span

Review of Kanyakumari's performance in The Hindu at Music Academy…

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Review of Kanyakumari’s performance in The Hindu at Music Academy Madras, on 27th december 1998

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Emphasis on Bhava

Review of Kanyakumari at the TTD Center Chennai

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Review of Kanyakumari at the TTD Center Chennai

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Praiseworthy

Review of Kanyakumari's performance at The Narada Gana Sabha

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Review of Kanyakumari’s performance at The Narada Gana Sabha

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29 hours non stop recital

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Satha Sangamam

Review of the 100 instrument ensemble led by Kanyakumari

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Review of the 100 instrument ensemble led by Kanyakumari

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In true MLV Style

Review of Kanyakumari's concert as part of MLV's birthday celebrations…

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Review of Kanyakumari’s concert as part of MLV’s birthday celebrations at Bharatiya Vidhya Bhavan, Chennai

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Kargil Relief Fund

Kanyakumari along with Kadri Gopalnath rallied 100 musicians raise funds…

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Kanyakumari along with Kadri Gopalnath rallied 100 musicians raise funds for the victims of the Kargil war

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