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Vignesh Shankaranarayanan: The Prince of Melody

February 13, 2020 , Thodupuzha K Shankar, Mumbai

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INTRODUCTION:

A LEGEND IN THE MAKING:

When the father is a king of melody, a very renowned mridangam artiste with global fame and recognition, his son is a Prince in the genre of soulful classical music, a legend in the making!

The journey from the starting point to the destination, the travel is full of travail for an artiste, whose whole attention is focussed on perfection. As a blooming artiste, endowed with inherent talents, Vignesh is like an unfolding bud, filled with lots of hopes and anxieties about a bright future and his hope are fully justified. When very competent and talented parents are with an ambitious artiste-son, his road to success appears to be an achievable dream. Very rarely we can find a family with all the members being artistes in different genres. Father a popular percussionist, or Mridangam vidwan, mother a gifted veena artiste and the son an upcoming Prince in the genre of music. The whole aim attention and determination of the Prince is to become a King in the Kingdom of classical music one day. His parents’ and Guru’s benedictions and god’s blessing will always lead him to enviable success!

A BRIEF ANALYSIS OF HIS CAREER SO FAR

PHOTO of Shankar-1

Thodupuzha K Shankar

We have already seen that Vignesh, having born into a family of artistes, his sole aim is to become a legend in life. Blessed with a melodious stentorian voice, acquired over previous births and proper tutelage under experienced Gurus, Vignesh is mastering the various intricate aspects of classical music. No music is complete without a classical background. Otherwise, it will be like a mansion without a strong foundation. Now let us see how he  is progressing in the domain of music vis-à-vis his studies.

Recently,  I had the opportunity to attend his classical concert rendered in Bhajan Samaj Garodia Nagar Mumbai during the Bhagavatha Sapthaham intermission. It seemed to be a rain of melodies!

He looked perfectly composed on the stage with his father who played mridangam for him and his baritone was heard by the aesthetic audience with rapt attention. When he ended his concert, there was encouraging applause or ovation from the audience and an elderly music lover Shri. Shyam Natarajan Garodia Nagar with adequate classical background went to him\ and complimented him abundantly. He even blessed him, that his voice is unique and one day he would become a great music legend! Those who heard Vignesh on that day would certainly concur with his optimistic observations.

Vignesh was born on 16-9-2001 and stared learning vocal music at atender age of five under the veteran Guru Smt. Vidya Harikrishna and he is currently undergoing training under Shri P Sunderarajan, Delhi. He is the only child of Mumbai Shankaranarayanan, Mridangam Vidvan, a qualified banker and Smt.  Meera Shankaranarayanan, a Veena maestro and a home maker, who are well-known and well-settled in their-own musical lines and therefore, extending him all attention and support.

He is a B-Grade artiste of All India Radio-A I R- Akash Vani and Prasar Bharathi Delhi respectively which is a great recognition of his talent at this young age. It is a matter of great pride that he was featured by Sankara T V Channel as part of the Sangeethotsavam Program in July 2019. In addition, Vignesh was featured by Radio F M 93.5 along with his father to speak about Konnakol&Percussion in relation to melody.

PHOTO-2020-02-12-21-11-48PRIZES AND PRAISES AWARDS AND RECOGNITIONS:

Let us now, see the prizes won by him in the various competitions, organized by the cultural organizations in Mumbai. They are:-

1)Sri Shanmukhananda Fine Arts & Sangeetha Sabha, Mumbai

2)Rasika Ranjani Sabha Garodia Nagar Ghatkopar East, Mumbai

3)Mulund Fine Arts Society, Mumbai

4)Music Triangle, Vile Parle, Mumbai

5)Mysore Association Matunga, Mumbai

6)India Cultural league, I C L, Mumbai

7)Vashi Fine Arts, Navi Mumbai

Another proud achievement of Vignesh is that he bagged the Pandit Vishnu Digambar Paluskar Award in the vocal competition organized by Sri Sharada Sangeetha Vidyalaya,Mumbai .

In addition, he won the silver lamp in the competitions organized by Sri Shanmukhananda Fine Arts, &Sangeetha Sabha in the vocal music category.

Similarly, in the competitions organized by Vashi Arts, Vignesh swept all the prizes by winning in six categories.

DEBUT AND PUBLIC PERFORMANCES:

In 2015, he gave an amazing debut concert at Ahobila mutt Chembur, Mumbai.

Vignesh got an opportunity to sing at the Kanika Parameshwari temple Matunga, Mumbai

As a proud winner of the Govt of India Cultural Scholarship, Vignesh had the privilege to perform as follows:

At the 150th Gandhi Jayanthi Celebrations in New Delhi, in the presence of the Honourable President Of India,Shri. Ramnath Kovind & Honourable Prime Minister of India Shri .Narendra Modi

PHOTO-2020-02-12-22-13-59 (2)A grand concert was arranged by the South Zone Cultural Centre (SZCC) at their centre which was attended by the Prince of Thanjavur in Chennai

He also gave a concert at the Kumbha Mela Celebrations,in January 2019 at Prayagraj, Allahabad as a sole Carnatic Music representative for all India.

Furnished here are the details of the various temples and Sabhas at various places, where Vignesh was blessed with opportunities to present his music performance.

1)AsthikaSamaj Matunga, Mumbai during the Ramnavami celebrations.

2)He gave an awesome concert at the prestigious Fine Arts Society,Chembur on the occasion of Pongal Festival under Aditya Sangeet series.

3)The Fine Arts society, Chembur, Mumbai, invited Vignesh to present his performance under the Kalavardhini series in August 2018.

4)Nadopasana,  Aurangabad, arranged a well-attended program for Vignesh during the annual festival.

5)He also had the opportunity to perform at the prestigious G S B Ganapathi festival at Matunga for the last six years in a row.

6)With the grace of Lord Uduppi Krishnan, Vignesh got an opportunity to give a concert at the Divine Uduppi temple at Kollur, Karnataka during the Navarathri celebrations, besides another, at the BhajanaSamaj,Matunga,Mumbai.

7)On another occasion, Bhakta Rasika Ranjani Sabha (B R R Sabha) Anushakthi Nagar Mumbai arranged a program for Vignesh, during the Navarathri Festival where he had the privilege of being featured along with other senior artistes. A great recognition indeed!

8)In July 2018, Vignesh was featured in a concert, arranged by PADAM , an organization, brought into existence with the sole purpose of promoting budding enthusiastic artistes.

9)At Arkay Convention Centre (A C C) Mylapore, Chennai, in May 2019 under the banner of MAARGA, the concert presented by Vignesh was a scintillating performance, rather a thrilling experience!

PHOTO-2020-02-12-22-13-59A singer blessed with sound classical background and a spontaneous mesmerizing voice can easily capture any audience with his first performance. Vignesh fully justifies these principal basic requirements.

It is noteworthy as well as apt to feel proud of that the contemporary music legend Shri. Shankar Mahadevan hosted Vignesh in a Music Concert as part of SANGAM -2016 AT N C P A (National Centre for Performing Arts) in Nariman Point Mumbai. The program was attended by Shri. Shankar Mahadevan himself, besides a huge zealous audience. The program was well appreciated by the whole audience and particularly, Shri. Shankar Mahadevan commented it as an outstanding concert which was an instant impetus to Vignesh.

When GODDESS SARASWATY(MINERVA) is pleased with an astute writer or an artiste like Vignesh, HER DIVINITY goes on marshalling series of opportunities before him/her. And, all these possible only by dint of absolute unconditional surrender coupled with hard work and perseverance.

Further, let us see the doors of opportunities Goddess of Fortune has thrown wide open before Vignesh who is proceeding with his successful performances everywhere.

:  BANYAN TREE, an organization constituted for the purpose of promoting Indian classical music selected Vignesh as one of the best vocalists below 15 years under their TENDER ROOTS category to perform in an ensemble, which is an amalgam of Indian and world musical forms. This ensemble (a group of supporting singers especially a Ballet) was performed in Bengaluru in a concert sponsored by THE BHOOMIJA TRUST.

:  He also performed at the TENDER ROOTS BANYAN TREE concert on 10th July 2016 at St. Andrew’s Auditorium Bandra Mumbai.

:   Vignesh performed in the Amritanjali Festival in July 2016, followed by another opportunity during the Mukula Festival, organized by the KALAVARDHINI CHARITABLE TRUST in November 2017.

:  During the Navarathri celebrations, Vignesh has been presenting concerts at the Rajarajeswari temple, in Anushakthi Nagar Mumbai, for the past 3 years consecutively.

:    An excellent concert was presented to music lovers at Hyderabad in October 2017, which was Well appreciated by the elite audience.

:    Rasika Ranjani Sabha,Garodia Nagar,Ghatkopar East, hosted a grand concert in the month of October 2017,in the presence of a host of spellbound music enthusiasts.

:   It is a matter of great pride to mention here that Vignesh gave a commendable performance at the Annual festival of Gana Kala Vidya Nilayam, Goregaon in the first week of November 2017.

:  During the Brahmotsavam of Lord Balaji at Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanam, Vignesh got an opportunity to perform, with the blessings of the Lord.

:   On another occasion during a festival a program, comprising of stalwarts, like Shri Bharat Sundar, Shri Palakkad Sriram etc. was organized by Nadopasana, Dombivili, Thane Dist., Maharashtra, in the month of February 2019.

:   He was featured in many more concerts launched by MSN Academy on many occasions.

PHOTO-2020-02-12-22-13-59 (3)Meanwhile, Vignesh is undergoing training in Violin under Vidwan Shri S V Ramachandran , in Mumbai.

EXTRA TALENT AND PURSUIT:

Also, he is practising himself in GANJIRA, a popular supportive musical instrument, used normally in Music concert, by groups of singers. He has given a couple of notable performances along with Smt. Shreya Devnath at B R R Sabha, Anushakthi Nagar, Mumbai.

Vignesh is currently pursuing his studies in the first year Bachelor degree of Pharmacy at the Institute of Chemical Technology (I C T-formerly known as U D CT) Mumbai.

CONCLUSION:

From the upward career trajectory of Vignesh Shankaranarayanan, as an upcoming enthusiastic singer, we can easily infer that a bright future is waiting at his threshold! Rather, he is on the cusp of being a unique singer in the years to come. As the proverb goes,‘The potential of a seed can be well judged from its shoot!’ He started his music career as a child prodigy and continued his progressive journey in his favourite field of music which is not a cake walk, but a rollercoaster experience for a dedicated musician.With the inherent potentials, we can easily judge that Vignesh will surely achieve his goal and become a renowned singer and win more prizes, praises and accolades as well as awards and recognitions in the years to come! Vignesh, by nature, is a very zealous singer with exemplary manners, amiable nature   and humility! All credit goes to the parents who have impeccably groomed him. Kudos to them! However, as an artiste rises in fame and popularity, he should continue to be  simple and always cherish humanity and humility!

As Dr. Abdul Kalam rightly stated in his famous book, ‘Indomitable Spirit’, the FIRE of quest, inquisitiveness and self-confidence should continue to burn within and kindle new hopes in every searching soul!

Whatever expertise one must have achieved, still, for a seeker, life is a tireless journey with a quest to reach perfection and in that onward journey, everyone is a student all his life time!

Let us wish Shri. Vignesh Shankaranarayananall success in his pursuits and a bright future!

——–SUBHAM——



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