Daughter and disciple of the eminent Musician-musicologist, the late Railgaramaguja
Ayyailgar, author of the magnum opus, Kritimanimalai Series, Padma Varadan's career as
a performing VI-Qa artiste spans over six decades. Her debut on the concert platform was
when she was barely nine years old.
A post-graduate in English with a degree in teaching as well from the Madras University,
she is an 'A' grade VI-Qa artiste on the lists of All India Radio and Doordarshan. Her VI-Qa
music is being broadcast over the radio and television network regularly.
Padma has performed concerts all across India and abroad. Subtlety, depth and clarity of
exposition are the hallmark of her music. She has conducted Lecture-Demonstrations on
Camatic Music, Solfa notation and VI-Qa technique at several Sabhas and Universities.
Padma is deeply committed to a VI-Qa legacy her father bequeathed to her - a music tradition espoused and transmitted to him
The Magnum Opus Krtirnanimalai Series, authored by my
Father and Guru, the late Rangaramanuja Ayyangar, first
hit the Karnataka Sarigitam scenario way back in 1947 with
a collection of 100 select compositions of the Saint
Composer, Sri Tyagaraja Svami to mark the Centenary
Year of the bard's passing on. Committed to detailed Solfa
Notation on never-before attempted lines in Tamil, the
publication sought to reflect the best of the diverse musical
versions orally transmitted over the years from generation
to generation through Tyagaraja's disciples. It also included
other features like biography, Raga Laksanam, free
translations of the lyrics, and anecdotal and cross
association vignettes setting the pace and pattern for further
works to flow from the same pen.
Despite formidable odds of general apathy towards written
music and lack of financial backing,four solid volumes
running into 3000 pages of printed matter and comprising
over 1500 extant classical compositions of the Musical
Trinity (viz. Tyagaraja, Muthusvami Diksitar, Syama Sastri),
the equally eminent Ksetragna and other noteworthy post-
Tyagaraja period composers, became a reality by the sixties
of the last century.
A 'Pallavi Tradition', Jayadeva' s 'Gita Govindam' with
notations in Tamil and other engaging treatises on Theory
in impeccable English viz., 'History of South Indian Music
from Vedic Times to the Present Day', a critical study of
Sarangadeva's 'Sagita Ratnakaram' and 'Musings of a
Musician' were some of the author's subsequent additions
dedicated to the Muse.
The need for the Krtimanimalai Series in English was felt
In order to reach the prodigious musical legacy to
Karnataka Sarigitam lovers and practitioners with different
language affinities. This English edition is also considered a
fitting tribute to the memory of Sri Ayyangar. The
compendium is gigantic. I bank on the goodwill of fellow
votaries to whom music is not a mere pastime but a
senous commitment to keep alive the glorious cultural
heritage. Sri RR had a message in this regard which was
not time bound and is too precious to be lost to both the
present and future generations only because of language
The scheme of execution by and large conforms to the
original format. The lyrics have been transliterated into
English with diacritical markings and into Sanskrit as well
to facilitate pronunciation. A free-format translation in
English; conveying the essence of the lyrics, is also offered.
The notation for the songs is as in the Tamil edition with
two significant additional features. In this edition, the svara
lines in the song notation have been set in the appropriate
variant form. Further, the system of markings has been
augmented considerably by the usage of Gamaka symbols
to denote the inflection nuances that are so critical in the
rendering of Karnataka Sangitam to avoid distortions and
mechanical reproduction of notes. Exhaustive r alphabetical
and ragawise indices, representative glossary and appendices,
too, have been found necessary to enhance the value of the
However, the telling language sense and communicative skill
that come through in the Tamil biography and annotations
for the compositions in the original works are difficult to
capture in toto in a language with a different cultural ethos
like English. A concise copy of the original, intellectually
stimulating, vignettes in Tamil will be made available on
My Sincere thanks are due to Sri Venugopal Chari for
developing customised, comprehensive software for effective
transfer of the lyrics and the notation details into English.
A stranger though he initially was to the subject matter,
months of focussed, highly motivated brainstorming sessions
between us saw the project to a conclusion in the midst of
our other respective professional duties.
Renowned Painter-Musician Sri S. Rajam has kindly
provided illustrations depicting some important landmarks
in the Saint's life. My heartfelt gratitude to him for this
Constructive suggestions for improvement from the
enlightened readership will be most gratefully welcome if
only to enhance the usefulness of the rest in the series.
Complementing the Volume I with its 337 compositions of
Saint Tyagaraja in ragas from Melas 1 to 27, is this volume
with the balance 356 compositions in ragas from Melas 28 to
72. Both the volumes are adaptations of the original Tamil
versions of Sri Krtirnanimalai authored by the late Sri
Features like chapters on the life, works, philosophy and the
contribution of Tyagaraja to the grammar and aesthetics of
South Indian music and Notation Perspectives that appear m
Volume I have not been repeated in this volume. Certain
salient aspects of the chapter on Notation Dynamics,
however, seemed relevant as guideposts to decipher equally
complex notations here and are presented m an abridged
form. Also included is the chapter on Diacritical Markings to
facilitate correct pronunciation of the lyrics and the sahityam.
As m the compamon volume, the notation section IS
preceded by a serial index of songs in this volume. A
Melakarta Reference Chart and the ragawise and alphabetical
indices, composite to both volumes, follow later after the
notations of compositions.
Notations for the compositions are similarly treated in respect
of the headers containing raga laksanam, lyrics in English and
Sanskrit, their English translation and detailed notations with
rhythm, tempo, built-in value checks, gamaka symbols, svara
variants and diacritical markings - the last two in place both
in the lyrics and notations.
Included in the Appendices section are some Sanskrit verses
that highlight the lofty parameters of musicology envisaged
by a band of dedicated visionaries. Then follows a brief note
on the concept of the Modal Shift of the Tonic and the
Katapayadi scheme of raga nomenclature, which yielded the
Melakarta bonanza. A couple of Sri RR's articles excerpted
from the souvenir commemorating his birth centenary throw
some more light on the compulsive researcher. The 'Saga of a'
Legend', again, IS a poignant record of the struggles,
tribulations and triumphs of an indomitable spirit that steered
over nearly seven decades of Sri RR's conscious, art-oriented,
life. Some objective assessments of the Savant from Sahrdayas
(well meaning music aficionados) brings this section to a close
along with landmarks in Sri RR's publishing career.
A glossary of over a thousand Telugu and Sanskrit words and
phrases used in these volumes provides the finale.
**Contents and Sample Pages**
Your email address will not be published *
Send as free online greeting card
Email a Friend