Toronto based award winning violinist Subhadra Vijaykumar brings the unique sounds of her Carnatic (South Indian classical) violin to the Chapel at Conrad Grebel. Subhadra will explain Carnatic Music and how the Carnatic violin, while being identical to the western violin, still differs from it. She will briefly talk about the history of the Indianization of the western violin and the noteworthy place the Carnatic violin has earned both as an accompanying and as a solo instrument.
Compositions in Carnatic music are predominantly devotional in nature. Subhadra will commence with a traditional opening invocation to the elephant headed God – Lord Ganesha. She will next present a very challenging rhythmic song which reflects her artistic perseverance during this difficult pandemic time. This musical work was composed by a contemporary 20th/21st century Carnatic Violinist.
This will then be followed by a spontaneous free flowing melody as a prelude to a composition that includes rhythmic improvisations. In conclusion the trio will present a fast paced song composed for instrumental music. She will be accompanied on the Mrdangam (South Indian double headed drum) by versatile mrdangist Sathish Venkatraman and on the violin by her talented student Dhishan Kandala.
Internationally travelled, award winning Subhadra Vijaykumar, a Toronto based violinist is the Founder and Artistic Director of Radha Carnatic Violin Creations. Its mission is to earn global recognition for the Carnatic style of playing the western violin. Radha Carnatic Violin Creations has performed across the GTA showcasing this style of playing to a very diverse audience. Subhadra has collaborated with artists from different musical genres including western classical and folk, African and the Hindustani (North Indian classical) tradition.
In March 2018, Subhadra was awarded the International Women’s Day, Women Achiever Award, a Publicly Nominated Award in recognition of her outstanding achievements and tireless efforts to be successful in Performing Arts/Music. She comes from a family with rich musical traditions and obtained a first-class diploma in violin from the prestigious Bharatiya Music and Arts Society's Music College in Mumbai, India, under the tutelage of the late Mrs.Vijayam Ramaswamy, an acclaimed disciple of the internationally renowned maestro- the late Prof.T N Krishnan. She was also awarded a grant by the Canada Council for the Arts to directly train under Prof. Krishnan. Presently she is under the training and guidance of the eminent violinist Delhi P Sunder Rajan.
Subhadra has accompanied several artists, participated in orchestras for Bharatanatyam (classical Indian) dance performances, and given lecture-demonstrations as well as solo recitals. These have been for notable organizations and at major venues across Canada, the Far East, and England. Her performances with her students at the World and Urban Music Showcase of the Royal Conservatory of Music, as well as for the Museums Mississauga’s On the Verandah summer series, have evoked appreciative rapport with audiences and excellent reviews from the media. Her performances for the Canadian Opera Company’s Lunchtime Series, the La Fontaine- Baldwin Lecture at the Koerner Hall of the Royal Conservatory of Music’s Telus Centre, as well as her interview with CBC Radio International have been very well acclaimed.
Finally, Subhadra Vijaykumar is a faculty member at the Oscar Peterson School of Music (previously Royal Conservatory of Music).
Sathish Venkataraman started his initial training in Mrdangam from the young age of 7 from Guru Shri Dr. Prapancham Ravindran, a top ranked percussionist in South India. Later, Sathish got advanced training on various complex Talas (rhythmic meters and formulae) from Guru Kalaimamani Thanjavur T.R. Govindarajan- a prodigy in percussive music.
Sathish has performed for top artists in multiple music genres like Classical music, Bharatanatyam (classical Indian dance performances) and in devotional music.
Dhishan Kandala is a grade 12 student at North Toronto Collegiate Institute in Toronto. He is currently learning the South Indian Carnatic style of music on the violin under the tutelage of Mrs. Subhadra Vijaykumar at the Oscar Peterson School of Music. Prior to this, he trained under Sri Ashok G. Gurjale at his violin school in Hyderabad, India.
Apart from Carnatic Classical, he also learnt Western Classical music on the violin for 3 years under the guidance of Dr. Bakyt Bekdjanov, in California. He is also an active member in the school’s strings program and a section leader in the school’s symphony orchestra.