The music of South India showcased in next Faculty Concert Oct. 25

Trichy Sankaran holding cultural drum
Trichy Sankaran

World-renowned mrdangam virtuoso  and York University music Professor Trichy Sankaran welcomes  his longtime musical collaborator, vina master Karaikudi Subramanian of Chennai, India, onstage for a showcase performance of South Indian music as part of the Faculty Concert Series of York’s Music Department.

These two leading interpreters of this rich musical tradition, joined by Sankaran’s disciple, kanjira player Desi Narayanan, will fill York’s Tribute Communities Recital Hall with mesmerizing Carnactic rhythms and ragas on Oct. 25 at 7:30pm in the Tribute Communities Recital Hall, Accolade East Building, Keele campus.

York music Professor Trichy Sankaran (left) with longtime musical collaborator, vina master Karaikudi Subramanian of Chennai, IndiaYork music Professor Trichy Sankaran (left) with longtime musical collaborator, vina master Karaikudi Subramanian of Chennai, India

Subramanian appears in concert as the inaugural guest of The Shan and Jaya Chandrasekar Visiting Artist/Scholar Residency. The residency program was established in York’s Faculty of Fine Arts by Shan Chandrasekar, the founder, president and CEO and Jaya Chandrasekar, executive vice-president and vice-president, programming, of Asian Television Network International Ltd.

Sankaran is an internationally renowned percussion virtuoso noted for his sensitive, flawless accompaniment and mastery of the mrdangan, the traditional two-headed drum of South Indian classical music. He has won many honours and awards including, most recently, the coveted title of ‘Sangita Kalanidhi’ bestowed by the Music Academy of Madras. With a concert career spanning more than 50 years, he has appeared at major festivals on four continents. He has performed with all of India’s classical music masters as well as jazz and electronic ensembles, gamelan and other world music groups from many different cultures and his own ensemble, Trichy’s Trio.

Subramanian is one of India’s leading performers and researchers on the vina, a stringed instrument which dates back to the 17th century. Known for his delicate, sweet renderings of traditional ragas and songs, his playing draws more attention to the devotional beauty of the works than to his considerable technical skill. A graduate of Wesleyan University, Subramanian taught for many years at Madras University. He is the founding director of Brhaddhvani in Chennai, a research and training centre for the study of world music.

Subramanian will be in residence at York’s Keele campus from Oct. 15 to 30 to present seminars, lectures and workshops for graduate and undergraduate students in the Department of Music. Together with Sankaran, he will also present a several public talks in the run-up to the showcase faculty concert on Oct. 25.

Trichy Sankaran holding cultural drumTrichy Sankaran

Subramanian and Sankaran will give a joint public workshop on South Indian ragas and talas at midday on October 22.  Two days later, on Oct. 24 at 7pm, they will share the podium to deliver the Lise Waxer Memorial Lecture.  Their presentation, titled “The Performance Practice of Carnatic Music and Its Global Impact”, will be an illustrated talk on melody, rhythm and improvisatory structures of instrumental music in the classical South Indian tradition, and its influence on other forms. Both events take place in the Martin Family Lounge in the Accolade East Building on York’s Keele campus.

Sankaran and Subramanian have performed together for many years, and have released several recordings, including the acclaimed CD, Sunada .

The Music of South India featuring Trichy Sankaran with guest artist Karaikudi Subramanian is the second of four performances in the Faculty Concert Series spotlighting faculty artists in the Department of Music at York University. Upcoming concerts will feature British music specialist and pianist Dorothy de Val (Jan. 17, 2013), and jazz composer and drummer Barry Elmes (Feb. 28, 2013).

Tickets are $15, or $5 for students and seniors. For tickets, contact the Box Office at 416-736-5888.