Sandeep Narayan was born into a family of musicians and music lovers. A house nearly always filled with visiting musicians and students of South Indian classical (Carnatic) music, Sandeep was exposed to this ancient tradition from before he was born. Although his decision to relocate from Los Angeles to Chennai in 2006 in order to take up music as his full-time profession was unprecedented, it did not come as a shock to those who knew the extent of his passion. After undergoing his initial training in Los Angeles from his mother Smt. Shubha Narayan, Sandeep received advanced lessons from the revered musicologist Calcutta Sri K.S. Krishnamurthy in Chennai. After Sri Krishnamurthy’s demise in 1999, Sandeep began training under the well known vocalist, Sri Sanjay Subrahmanyan.
Sandeep has completed concert tours of North America, the United Kingdom, Germany, Australia, Singapore, and Sri Lanka, and is regularly accompanied by leading artists in the field. Sandeep also enjoys teaching and conducting workshops, especially to Western audiences. The combination of being brought up in America and having lived and learned music for so long in Chennai, puts Sandeep in a unique position to serve as a cultural link between Carnatic music and audiences around the world.
He hails from a musical family and was formally initiated into a musical path by his mother at the age of 2 and trained in vocal music for a period of 8 years. He commenced his schooling in Carnatic Violin at the age of ten under the able guidance of Smt. Visalam Vageeswar (a disciple of Sangeetha Bhooshanam Shri.T.S.Krishnaswami) at the Shanmukhananda Vidyalaya, Mumbai and was conferred the title of “Shanmukha Mani” He came under the wings of the distinguished violin maestro Kum.A.Kanyakumari who stressed the importance of vocal orientation in instrument playing and the proper enunciation of Sahitya. To establish this aspect of music, she chose to sing during classes instead of playing her violin. He imbibed the art of accompaniment at an early age from the revered Guru who stood out as a stock accompanist of the great MLV during her service to Carnatic music for more than three decades. Ramakrishnan has accompanied Kanyakumari in her performances and also in her grand musical ensembles on numerous occasions. He is fortunate to have learned under Sangeetha Kalanidhi TK Govinda Rao and imbibe the purity, classicism and simplicity of Saint Thyagaraja’s Shishya parampara. He also was fortunate to learn under Smt. T.R.Balamani who is well known for her huge repertoire of keerthanams, varnams, padams and javalis which she never held back from her disciples. Sri Govinda Rao and Smt Balamani, both hailing from the Musiri school, gave him a good continuity in his musical journey. Ramakrishnan has accompanied several senior artists including Sangeetha Kalanidhi Shri. T. K. Govinda Rao, Sangeetha Kalanidhi Shri. Nedunuri Krishnamurthy, Shri K. V. Gopalakrishnan and is the receipient of numerous awards including Naada Bhooshanam from Nadopasana, First prize in the AIR completion held in 2000 at the age of seventeen, Best Violinist in sub-senior slot – Music Season both at the Music Academy, Krishna Gana Sabha and Indian Fine Arts. He is a sought after violinist in Chennai and has performed all over India.
Sai Giridhar, born in the year 1984, into a family deeply interested in classical music, began his training under the renowned mridangam artiste Parupalli S Phalgun and Shri. M.L.N Raju and also from learnt from Shri sathya sai Mirpuri college of Music. Sai Giridhar is an ”A” artiste from the All India Radio. He has accompanied all the reputed artists in India and abroad. Some of the reputed artists are Shri. Mangalampalli Balamurali Krishna, Shri. Nedunuri Krishna murthy, Shri O.S. Thyagarajan, Malladi Brothers, Shri Shashank (flute),Shri. Unni krishnan, Ganesh Kumaresh, Smt. Bombayjayashri, Smt. Sudharaghunathan, Smt. Aruna Sairam,Ranjani andGayathri,Smt. Nithyashri Mahadevan, Akkarai sisters, and so on. He has also been part of many Jugalbandi concerts with famed artists like Pandit Vishwamohan bhatt, Purbayan Chatterji, Rakesh Chaurasia and so on. He has the opportunity to be a part of a reputed fusion group from Denmark called ”The New Jungle Orchestra” . Giri’s name appears on several CD and DVD labels.
He received the Gold Medal for his performance on mridangam at the 12th National Youth Festival at Pune in 2007. He has many recordings to his credit. He has conducted many workshops on mridangam in various music institutions. Shri Sai Giridhar Kuchibhotla is awarded the Ustad Bismillah Khan Yuva Puraskar of Sangeet Natak Akademi for the year 2016 for his notable talent in the field of Carnatic instrumental music.
Ghatam G. Chandrasekara Sharma was born to Shri T.H. Gurumoorthy and Smt. G. Hemavathy on 11th of July 1990. He is a graduate in Commerce from the University of Madras. Shri Gurumoorthy is brother of Shri T.H. Vinayakram (Vikku) and T.H. Subashchandran. He is son of Late T.R. Harihara Sharma, founder of The Jaya Ganesh Tala Vadya Vidhyalaya. Born into a lineage of accomplished musicians, Chandra Sekara Sharma did not lack any motivation to take a liking to music. His father, himself a noted Violinist, inculcated the superiority of Carnatic music as early as when he was 5 years old and gave him beginner’s lessons for playing the Ghatam. While he was practising under his father’s guidance, his capacity to understand the higher learnings of the instrument was discovered by Shri T.H. Subash Chandran, his paternal uncle, who is a well established Guru both in India and abroad. With the blessings of his parents, his guru and his uncle Shri T.H. Vinayakram, he has taken to playing the Ghatam on a professional level. His debut concert was for Smt. Sulochana Pattabhiram in the year 2000. Since then, he has had many opportunities to play for stalwarts such as T.N. Krishnan, Suguna Purushothaman, Sudha Raghunathan, Neyveli Santhanagopalan, T.M. Krishna, Mandolin U. Shrinivas, Malladi Brothers, Bombay Sisters, Viji Krishnan, Gayathri Venkataraghavan, and more. He accompanies for many Tala Vadya Concerts and Fusion Concerts such as the one in Mumbai where he accompanied Ambi Subramaniam, Solo Violinist and son of Legend Shri L. Subramaniam. He has performed in Yuva Kalaakaar Utsav in the year 2004. He has also been associated with Abaswara Ramji’s Isai Mazhalai and has performed in it for many years. He has also been learning vocal lessons from Shri Vijay Siva since a young age and is an accomplished performer, although not professionally. He has been awarded the Junior Scholarship for Vocal by CCRT. He has also been the recipient of T.R. Harihara Sharma Award for Ghatam during the Gokulashtami Series at Krishna Gana Sabha in the year 2004. He was also awarded the ‘BalaKalaratna’ by Bala Kalasagaram Trust in the year 2009. A B grade artist at the All India Radio since 2008, he performs many live concerts regularly. He also plays for cinema music, tele-serials and other music albums. It is noteworthy that he has also been privileged to perform in from of Shri A.P.J. Abdul Kalam, then The President of India, at the Rashtrapathi Bhawan, New Delhi and also at Tata’s Theatre, Mumbai in front of other distinguished personalities.