Classical Arts Society Presents Ramkrishnan Murthy via FB Live

The South Indian NRI diaspora in the US has supported classical carnatic music for more than half a century. This is done both by bringing carnatic musicians to perform here in the US, and by having kids born and raised here learn this art in order for them to stay connected to their Indian roots. Little did they expect that this would produce excellent performers amongst them in the last decade or so.

One such performer is Ramakrishnan Murthy (RKM), a young carnatic musician born and raised in California and currently settled in Chennai, where he has attained the stature of a highly acclaimed musician in a very short time. His music attracts the young and the old carnatic buffs alike.

He started his Carnatic musical journey through weekly once lessons from Padma Kutty in CA.  In an interview he quips that initially he was not very keen on learning this music but was not rebellious and therefore was very diligent in learning so as to please his parents and teacher. During his high school years, he took lessons from gurus Delhi Sundararajan and R.K. Shriram Kumar on his vacation visits to India.  His first performance was a very well received home concert after which Carnatic music became his passion. He is very talented and hard working.  His music is very pure and at the same time with plenty of creativity.

Classical Arts Society Houston proudly presents Ramakrishnan Murthy in a virtual grand finale concert of its youth festival HYKU.  This will be premiered on its FB page on Friday, October 16, at 6.30 pm, heralding the arrival of the Navarathri festival with his thematic presentation of DEVI songs.

The Indian press has aptly captured this young musician and his success story:

The Hindu

“It is, indeed, gratifying to note that Ramakrishnan Murthy, who has gained immense popularity, keeps his creative energy under tight leash through his musical wisdom. Recipient of ‘Isai Peroli’ title from the organization this year, Ramakrishnan Murthy justified it in every way with his performance.”

First post

“When you see Murthy, there is nothing to suggest that he grew up away from the shores of Chennai: he wears a dhoti and shirt, the standard attire for most Tamil Brahmins, with the sacred ash prominently smeared on his forehead. When he speaks in Tamil, or English, neither give away his US upbringing.  In fact, his English nestles in the cadences of Tamil. And when he sings, he evokes the music of past masters without mimicking them which, in a traditional music like Carnatic music, is a priceless quality.”

Here are quotes from a couple of board of directors of Classical Arts Society (CAS) who are passionate carnatic music buffs:

Abhishek Balakrishnan (Director CAS), a young Carnatic violinist himself, about RKM:

“A very inspiring, all-rounded artist who always brings something fresh to his concerts. He offers an engaging concert experience for his co-artists on stage as well as to lay and experienced rasikas. I have enjoyed his unique presentations recently, including a thematic concert with the painter Vijay Varanasi.” (can be viewed on YouTube)

Dr. Lakshmi Srivaths (Secretary, CAS), a Veena player, about RKM:

“Very passionate about Carnatic music, his music is pristine, soaked in classicism, extremely sincere and completely involved singing! It is pure bliss to listen to his music and to see someone who grew up in the US excel and be respected amongst the very best in Chennai’s Carnatic circle!”

So, tune in, one and all, and enjoy this free concert and welcome the Goddess into your homes this Navarathri season.