Feature a Guru


posted Dec 12, 2017, 10:59 AM by CCC Editor   [ updated Dec 12, 2017, 3:26 PM ]

Carnatic Chamber Concerts thanks Vidwan Shri Shivakumar Bhat, Vidwan Shri Natarajan Srinivasan, and Vidwan Shri Shrikanth Chary for sharing, as part of the Feature a Guru Series, very valuable insights about one of the most important traditions in Indian culture, the Guru-Shishya relationship. From ancient times, teachers have been held at a very high esteem in Indian society and are revered. The Teacher or Guru, is the embodiment of knowledge and the disciple, the Shishya, gains the knowledge from the Guru by practicing respect, humility, discipline, obedience, and devotion to the Guru as well as the art form. Shri Shivakumar, Shri Natarajan, and Shri Shrikanth also spoke about how this ancient learning tradition is fading away with changing times, technological advancements and a globally distributed community, and how new methods of learning have evolved. They compared the academic institutions in the USA which are culturally very different wherein students learn in an informal and independant atmosphere to the traditional gurukulam way of teaching. The teachers explained how the Guru-Sishya parampara is still being followed in Carnatic music teaching as much as before, if not adhered to as strictly as in ancient times, and how parents would like their children to imbibe great values like humility, respect, discipline, and obedience by way of putting them in music classes. The teachers elaborated that the Guru-sishya sacred bonding in Carnatic music is deep and continues lifelong and unlike the academic institutions, the Carnatic music gurus not just impart musical knowledge to the students, but also become another parent to the students, nurturing them with a kind heart and imbibing great values of life and philosophy with their masterly mentoring. Gurus through their rigorous discipline make the students realize their fullest potential but also create an emotional and intellectual bond with them that makes the students look up to their Gurus whenever they need help, guidance, and advice. The teachers also invited students Kavya, Akshay, and Gaurav to share their perspective about learning in modern day academic institutions versus learning Carnatic music in the traditional way.

Our sincere thanks to Shri Shivakumar Bhat, Shri Shrikanth Chary, and Shri Natarajan Srinivasan for their valuable time preparing this presentation for our CCC children and parents and emphasizing that a selfless, hardworking teacher with a respectful, obedient, dedicated student would reinforce the Guru-Shishya relationship and make learning very effective. 


Feature A Guru Presentation July 2017


posted Dec 4, 2017, 6:12 PM by CCC Editor   [ updated Dec 4, 2017, 6:14 PM ]

CCC thanks Vidwan Shri Arvind Lakshmikanthan for his presentation on the importance of practice, which is the secret for attaining mastery over any art form, especially Carnatic music. Shri Arvind Lakshmikanthan explained how relentless practice forms the solid foundation for the quest for excellence. Shri Arvind also talked in detail about the 5 essentials of a successful practice session: finding the best time to practice productively, setting a goal to accomplish with each practice, being patient to do hours of repetitive work and reach your milestones, having the determination to accomplish your goals, and last but not the least, doing smart practice to ensure that all the effort you put in is valuable. Following these 5 essentials of a successful practice session makes you learn to analyze your practice and seek consistency in your performance. It was an intriguing presentation which greatly benefited our CCC children by having them understand that practice is an intensely personal experience which requires repetition and perseverance, and which, in tandem with self-evaluation, will enable them to try new ideas and commitments. Our thanks to Shri Arvind Lakshmikanthan for his wonderful presentation and for his thought-provoking advice to our budding talents, telling them not to practice until they get it right, but to practice until they cannot get it wrong. This mantra will help them not just in Carnatic music, but in all the other fields they aspire to succeed in. Thank you Sir!

Feature A Guru: Shri Arvind Lakshmikanthan


posted Jul 18, 2017, 12:30 AM by CCC Editor   [ updated Dec 12, 2017, 12:09 PM ]


Carnatic Chamber Concerts thanks Vidwan Shri Hari Devanath for his wonderful presentation on structural elements of a composition with a focus on how to distinguish an Anupallavi from a CharaNam in a composition. Carnatic music compositions are the creations of composers who are great scholars and prolific poets with a command over the language whose songs are immersed in devotion but at the same time have verses with poetic mastery and intricate rhyming word patterns. Shri Hari Devanath in his presentation beautifully explained how to enjoy the lyrical beauty of the compositions along with its musical aspects to get the fullest experience as envisaged by the composers themselves. Shri Hari Devanath delved into an important part of Carnatic compositions, its structure, and how to identify an anupallavi in a composition, which might in general sound like a charaNam. It was a great learning for the CCC children and the audience to know about the rhythmic pattern called Praasam, how the great composers used various types of praasams like prathama akshara, dwitiya akshara, anthim akshara and many more in their compositions, and how observing them could help us to identify anupallavi. Shri Hari Devanath in his own humorous and captivating way explained the different types of praasams by singing several compositions like Bhajare gopalam, Manasa sancharare and examples from Dikshitar kritis, Purandaradasa kritis and Bhadrachala Ramadasa kritis and explained how to compare and contrast the syllables based on praasams and distinguish the anupallavi from charaNam. CCC immensely thanks Shri Hari Devanath for introducing our young musicians to the concept of praasam, giving them valuable knowledge to research further, and enabling them to better understand and enjoy the poetic and emotional intricacy of Carnatic compositions.

Feature A Guru - Shri Hari Devanath - JUNE 2017


posted Jul 18, 2017, 12:23 AM by CCC Editor   [ updated Dec 12, 2017, 12:10 PM ]


Carnatic Chamber Concerts thanks Vidwan Shri Ravindrabharathy Sridharan for his Feature A Guru Series presentation to the CCC children on how to extend longevity in music. While applauding the budding artists for being associated with this divine art, and appreciating the encouraging, thriving eco-system Bay Area's music associations are offering to nurture their talents, Shri Ravindrabharathy Sridharan talked about the very important aspect of how to keep up the flame of passion for music and continue music for lifetime. He gave several valuable insights as to how the children should observe and learn from the great masters' view point, and regularly listen to their guru and guru parampara concerts and be inspired. Shri Ravindrabharathy Sridharan beautifully explained how the Great Masters followed SravaNam, active listening, and Saadhagam, practice in depth. These are the two methods that helped them to master their art as well as enjoy the process such that they continued to be inspired by music all their lives. Their successful performances was only the tip of the iceberg, whereas as their lives were filled with hard work, sacrifice, and humbleness. Shri Ravindrabharathy Sridharan gave several valuable suggestions on how to ensure longevity in music and advised the young talents to actively listen to the great masters' music as a group and analyze their work, discover unique aspects of their music, learn about their lives and journey with music, and practice with focus to push the boundaries to improve more. Shri Ravindrabharathy Sridharan also suggested books on/by the great masters for our children to read this summer and benefit from. Thank you Shri Ravindrabharathy Sridharan for taking your time to put together this wonderful presentation and share your profound and reflective thoughts with the CCC audience.



posted Jul 18, 2017, 12:17 AM by CCC Editor   [ updated Dec 12, 2017, 12:11 PM ]

CCC thanks Vidwan Shri Vivek Sundararaman for his humour-filled presentation on the appreciation of music, "Rasikathvam". As part of the Feature A Guru series, Shri Vivek Sundararaman gave an engaging, informative presentation on the importance of rasikas and rasikathvam in live concerts and how appreciation of music combined with knowledge elevates the experience and gives satisfaction to the listener both as a rasika and as a learner. He kept the audience engrossed with his brilliant puns when detailing how the rasikas, with their unparalleled love for music, express their appreciation, by feeling nostalgic about the same renditions performed by the legends in the past, identifying ragas and keeping talam along with the musicians. Shri Vivek also insisted to the young music learners the benefits of listening to live concerts (kELvi Gyanam) and how to maximize and take away some key learning with each concert they attend which would make them familiar to ragas, songs and help them to enjoy the process. His presentation was riveting with informative and humorous visuals and audio clippings played to the children to interactively explain them how to slowly build their knowledge and appreciation of music by paying attention to the details of the song, make a connection to the ragas they know and do an emotional mapping as well as observe the musicians' synergy. We immensely thank Shri Vivek Sundararaman for taking his time to prepare this very interesting topic and explaining how to listen to a concert to become a better musician and a rasika. The CCC audience thoroughly enjoyed the presentation and had a lot of learnings to take home.


posted Jul 18, 2017, 12:13 AM by CCC Editor   [ updated Dec 12, 2017, 12:13 PM ]


CCC thanks Vidwan Dr. Saravanapriyan Sriraman for giving a thematic presentation on "How to Approach a Raga", a topic that is broad, deep, and very important for all budding musicians and music lovers to understand. As part of CCC's Feature A Guru Series, Shri Saravanapriyan elegantly explained the vast topic into easily understandable parts by demonstrating with songs, phrases, and a slideshow presentation. He spoke about how each raga is identified by the gamakam associated with its swaras and how the gamakams and kaalapramaNam differentiate the ragas even though some ragas might have the same swaras. He eloquently explained how the gamakams associated with the notes create the mood and characteristics of a raga. Shri Saravanapriyan also briefed about the Trayodasha lakshaNaas of a raga, giving examples of some of its parts and also how to identify the allied ragas. The tips he gave on how to build manodharmam within the rules of a raga and practical methods on how to become proficient in a ragam were priceless to every budding musician. We immensely thank Shri Saravanapriyan, for taking the time to prepare and present this key topic to our members.


posted Jul 18, 2017, 12:07 AM by CCC Editor   [ updated Dec 12, 2017, 12:14 PM ]

Carnatic Chamber Concerts thanks Vidhushi Smt. Kasthuri Shivakumar for the engaging presentation as part of CCC's Feature A Guru Series about an important topic which has become integral part of music learning today. Smt. Kasthuri Shivakumar eloquently presented interesting details about how students in the past learned Carnatic music without a recording device and contrasted it with the current generation of students who have recording devices to help by discussing the advantages and disadvantages in each method of learning and sharing personal experiences with both methods. Smt. Kasthuri Shivakumar gave valuable tips on how to effectively use the recording devices and be well organized. It was an interactive presentation with valuable information for all music learners.


posted Jul 18, 2017, 12:03 AM by CCC Editor   [ updated Dec 12, 2017, 12:16 PM ]

Carnatic Chamber Concerts thanks Vidwan Shri Gopi Lakshminarayanan for his support and encouragement to CCC and for giving a creative, insightful presentation to the budding musicians about the benefits of attending Live Carnatic music concerts, a topic which comes at a perfect timing when Margazhi music season is happening. This interactive audio/visual presentation, "Why Lyve?" was very engaging and had thoughtful questions for the children. It was very interesting to listen to the children's answers and their perspective about live concerts. Shri Gopi Lakshminarayanan beautifully elaborated that attending live concerts help in observing the musicians' stage presence, get inspired by their confidence, playing style and see the synergy between the performers and to top it all, to listen to the music without distractions. The presentation was very valuable to the CCC children and parents and we are sure it would inspire them to attend more live concerts.



posted Jul 18, 2017, 12:00 AM by CCC Editor   [ updated Dec 12, 2017, 12:17 PM ]


CCC thanks Vidwan Sri Srikanth Chary for his great support to CCC from its inception. CCC also thanks Sri Srikanth Chary for sharing with our upcoming young musicians and parents several valuable pointers on accompaniment and the importance of teamwork and collaboration between the artists. His practical and easy to follow tips and advice on some of the key aspects of accompaniment, from preparation for concerts, preparing for improvisations, stage presentation to interaction on stage with fellow musicians were immensely helpful to all the budding talents.


posted Jul 17, 2017, 11:57 PM by CCC Editor   [ updated Dec 12, 2017, 12:19 PM ]

Carnatic Chamber Concerts thanks Vidwan Shri Natarajan Srinivasan for his support to CCC and for sharing with our budding musicians, mridangists and audience, a very valuable information on time, tempo and speed, one of the very important, key elements of Laya Dasa PraNas. The presentation with clear pictures showing how aksharas, Mathras, kaLai and Gathi relate to time, how to mathematically calculate the mathras and gathi and how to represent korvais in a tala chart were very interesting and intriguing. We are sure the segment would have helped our budding mridangists understand the theory aspects of the layam and motivate them to learn more!.

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