Renowned violinist visits US and discusses plans for ‘Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav’
Internationally renowned violinist Padma Bhushan Dr. L Subramaniam, recently met Indian Ambassador to the United States Taranjit Singh Sandhu and discussed local celebration plans in the United States for the Government of India initiative “Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav” to commemorate and celebrate 75 years of independence.
The Mahotsav was inaugurated by Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi earlier this year. The Initiative’s website states that “Mahotsav is an embodiment of all that is progressive regarding the socio-cultural, political and economic identity of India”.
The official start of ‘Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav’ was March 12, 2021, a 75-week countdown, which ends on August 15, 2023.
Renowned Indian singer Dr Subramaniam and Padma Shri Kavita Krishnamurti along with their 10-year-old granddaughter Mahati Subramaniam recently made a multi-purpose visit to the United States and visited Los Angeles, Houston, New York and Washington DC during their journey. , they have taken part in tours and concerts and made video recordings mainly in New York for the 31st anniversary of the Lakshminarayana Global Music Festival (LGMF).
The LGMF was established in 1992 by Dr Subramaniam in memory of his father and guru, Professor V. Lakshminarayana. He is especially happy that the centenary celebrations of the birth of his mother, Seethalakshmi coincide with the 31st LGMF anniversary, and the 75e independence anniversary of India – Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav.
In an interview with News India Times, Dr Subramaniam said he had met both Ambassador Sandhu and Deputy Chief of Mission Sudhakar Dalela. “Some programs have already been finalized and others are in the process of being finalized. I also met the Consul General of India in Houston, Aseem R Mahajan, who is coordinating our visit to the Mahatma Symphony grand premiere with the Houston Symphony Orchestra in Houston in 2022. We will be doing a world tour next year at United States, Europe and other countries to participate in celebrations of the 75e anniversary of the independence of India and the LGMF.
Dr Subramaniam said he also met Indian Consul General in New York Randhir Jaiswal and discussed plans for Mahotsav celebrations next year. He recalled that during his visit to New York in 1987, he rehearsed at the Indian Consulate in New York before performing at the United Nations to commemorate the 40e independence anniversary of India.
In addition, “in India, to coincide with the Mahotsav, we will have the LGMF from January 9 to 11 on digital and live concerts from January 26 to 30 in different cities,” said Dr Subramaniam.
As recently as last week, Chief Minister of Gujarat Bhupendra Patel presented the 2021 Tana Riri Award to Kavita Krishnamurti and a souvenir to Dr Subramaniam during the Tana-Riri Mahotsav in Vadnagar, Gujarat. The celebrity couple also had the opportunity to meet Prime Minister Modi’s older brother Somabhai Modi at the outdoor concert attended by around 15,000 people.
Responding to a question about her granddaughter Mahati’s recent debut album, “How We Feel”, Dr Subramaniam said she was their family’s fifth generation musician.
“Mahati has been performing since the age of 2. She performed in a symphony orchestra at Gandhi Jayanti’s celebrations in Sri Lanka in October 2018, and recently performed a duet with me at a live concert at the Aspiration Grounds at the Sri Chinmoy Center in New York City. This is her first major solo production, where she sang, wrote the lyrics and melody, played the violin and performed a gymnastics routine in the music video. We are proud of her, ”he said.
Dr Subramaniam noted that many musicians were severely affected during the pandemic. “Many of them sold their equipment and studios and suffered to survive and provide for their families,” he said.
“During the pandemic, we came up with a project that I composed in Bangalore and involved musicians from all over the world online including Pandit Jasraj from New Jersey, KJ Yesudas from Houston and the late SP Balasubrahmanyam from Chennai and others” , said Dr Subramaniam.
In addition to this project, he has also produced online programs, particularly on doctors who have lost their lives treating COVID patients during the pandemic.
But things are slowly returning to normal, Dr Subramaniam noted. He gave his first outdoor concert on July 23e earlier this year near Chennai on auspicious Guru Purnima Day, at the invitation of Sri Kanchi Vijayendra Saraswati, which was also her birthday.