TK Govinda Rao

17, 11th Street, Indira Nagar,
Chennai 600 020. Tel: +44-24413589

Sangitha Kalanidhi T.K.Govinda Rao is a musician's musician and a musicologist. He trained extensively under Musiri Subramania Iyer for about 15 years-- a period he recalls with fondness and gratitude as a 'great boon' in his musical life-- and also under Tirupambaram Sri Swaminatha Pillai, and Brindamma. He is known for his sahitya shuddham, laya gnyaanam and bhaava-pradhaana neraval singing.

He has also had a parallel career working at the Madras Music College as a teacher, at AIR Chennai as a Producer and at AIR Delhi as Chief Producer. He is a veteran teacher and has trained a number of students. His books on the compositions of the Trinity and other Carnatic composers are extremely well regarded. The Carnatic music community eagerly looks forward to his upcoming book, "Varnamanjari", a collection of 400 Tana, Pada, Chauka and Daru Varnams in different Talas.

Veteran musician Shri T K Govinda Rao performed at HTCC Bothell on September 8, 2007. The accompanists were Nishanth Chandran on the violin, Shriram Bhramanandam on the mridangam and Ravi Balasubramanian on the ghatam.

The concert started with the popular varnam (Ninnu kori) in Mohanam. It was amazing to hear Shri Govinda Rao render the pallavi, anupallavi and chittaiswaram in 5 speeds including tisram and mel-tisram! It demonstrated his innate mastery over layam and was flawlessly executed.

Before a detailed alaapana of Kambhoji, Shri TKG presented another rare krithi-- "Ananda saagara", a Thyagaraga composition with a beautiful chittaiswaram, in the ragam Garudadhwani. The krithi chosen for Kambhoji was the Dikshitar masterpiece, "Shree subramanyaya namaste". While I was expecting this to be the main piece of the concert, the song was not elaborated with any neraval or swaras. He then presented "Nagumomu" in Abheri ( immortalized by his guru Musiri Subramanya Iyer) after a short alapana. I was a bit disappointed in not hearing a neraval for "jagamella paramatma", but I understand the artists had to comply with time constraints and close in time for the temple pooja. The concert ended with a Ragamalika piece of Purandaradasar and a Thillana.