The life of Swathi Thirunal was an offering in music to God. A rare renaissance personality, Swathi Thirunal was a king among musicians and musician among kings. His musical compositions and his life were a mutual translation of his devotion to LordPadmanabha, the presiding deity of the Travancore Royal House....
Swathi Thirunal Rama Varma
was a progressive ruler who lived ahead of his times and was committed to the welfare of the people. Being an able administrator his far sighted reforms were responsible for introducing modern medicine, English education and a humane judicial system in Kerala....


Composers and Musicians

Semmangudi Srinivasa Iyer

Srinivasa Iyer was the third son born to Radhakrishna Iyer and Dharmasamvardhini Ammal. Born on 25th July 1908, he grew up in the village of Semmangudi which is in the cradle of Carnatic music, in Tanjavur District,Tamil Nadu. Srinivasa Iyer started learning music in 1916, at the age of eight from Semmangudi Narayaswamy Iyer. He was then under the tutelage of Gottu Vadhyam Vidwan Tiruvidaimurudur Sakharama Rao for a few years.Later he went to Umayalpuram Swaminatha Iyer from whom he learnt any number of
Thyagaraja songs. Semmengudi also had training from the acclaimed vocalist, Sangeetha Kalanidhi Sri Maharajapuram Viswanatha Iyer .Semmangudi's first music recital was in 1926 at the Kumbakonam Nageswaraswami temple. Although a traditionalist, he introduced many novelties in the works of composers ranging from Swati Tirunal to Ambujam Krishna. Semmangudi later shifted to Thiruvananthapuram on the request of the Travancore Royal family. He edited and published Swathi compositions. He also taught many of his student Swathi kritis and thus popularised them all over south India. He has the rare distinction of performing at the Navarathri Mandapam for 50 years.Semmangudi has been showered with awards including the Padma Bhushan and the Padma Vibhushan conferred by the Government of India His prominent disciples include M.S. Subbalakshmi, Prof. T. N. Krishnan, T. M. Thiagarajan and P. S. Narayanaswamy, Pala C K Ramachandran etc. Dr Semmangudi passed away in 2003. He had graciously permitted inclusion of his navarathri renderings in this site.

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