Avasarala Kanyakumari
Avasarala Kanyakumari - Profile Of Classical Musicians

Kanyakumari is a native of Vijayanagaram, Andhra Pradesh and has been living in Chennai for more than 4 decades.She belongs to a family of musicians. Listening to her sparkling brighas and intricate sangatis while she had just started to tread her musical journey, the respected music critic Subbudu compared her music to the ever glittering diamond stud in the nose ring of the goddess Kanyakumari. Ever since she has received innumerable accolades and praise from audiences worldwide and discerning critics for her innovation, accompaniment and solo performances while at the same time strictly adhering to the Carnatic music tradition. Kanyakumari is an accompanist, soloist, teacher, innovator, composer and organiser.

Delicate, bright-eyed, and ever-smiling, Avasarala Kanyakumari more popularly known as A. Kanyakumari, is synonymous with the violin. Clad in saffron and wearing numerous strands of rudraksha beads enhanced with pendants of various Hindu gods, aro und her neck, an uninitiated onlooker can easily mistake her for a sanyasin.

In a way she is, for her agenda in life is to worship god and music. “The Lord of the Seven Hills is our family deity and I keep visiting the shrine regularly. As a child I would spend most of my free time at the temple near our home in Vijayanagaram, Andhra Pradesh, where my father was employed in the police department,” says Kanya tracing her roots.

She sharpened her style after she attracted the attention of the late Sangita Kalanidhi M.L.Vasanthakumari, who had her as her accompanist for most of her life.Kanyakumari went to all places and shared the glory of M.L.V with her own accomplishment.

Her extensive experience spanning more than 4 decades combined with a sharp acumen and fine sense of creativity has earned her a distinct place.She has evolved her own style of melodious playing and silken bowing which closely resembles vocal music rhapsodising audiences all over.

She has many successful creative innovations to her credit. "Vadya Lahari" her brain child is a new combo of the violin, veena and Nadaswaram. "Tristhayi sangamam" Confluence of 3 violins playing in different octaves portraying a special dimension. "Carnatic Music Ensembles" of 25, 50, 75 and 100 violins as well as 100 instrument ensemble commemorating the millennium A music piece "100 ragamalika swarams" which exposes her dexterity in bringing out the raga swaroopam in just one avarthana each. 29 hours non stop marathon performance.

She has dedicated her life to music and is grateful to the Almighty, gurus, parents, students, sabhas, critics and rasikas for their continued support. She is a dedicated teacher and has taught numerous students in India and abroad, many of whom are very popular artists. She teaches without a price tag and generously encourages students to participate in full measure. She has also released Violin Lessons Tutorial VCD's for students who do not have access to learn directly from a guru.

Family Background

Her parents Sri Avasarala Ramarathnam and Smt.Jayalakshmi encouraged her immensely to pursue music.

Musical Training

She was fortunate to be a sishya (disciple) of 3 great legendary gurus, Ivaturi Vijeswara Rao, M. Chandrasekaran and M. L. Vasanthakumari, Ivaturi Vijeshwara Rao, M. Chandrasekharan and M. L. Vasanthakumari which have groomed her into a front ranking violinist.

Awards & Titles

Kalaimamani from Govt. of Tamil Nadu.

Ugadi Puraskarfrom Govt. of Andhra Pradesh.

Top Rank by A.I.R.

Honarary citizenship of the state of Maryland,U.S.

TTK Award from the Music Academy,Chennai.

Asthana Viidushi of Sringeri Sarada Peetam,Ahobila Mutt and Avadhoota Peetam.

"Saptagiri sangeetha vidwanmani from Sri Tyagaraja Festival Committee of Tirupathi.

Dhanurveena Praveena, a title bestowed on her by M.S. Subbulakshmi, commemorating Kanyakumari's 25 years in concerts.

Sangeeta Kala Nipuna, from the Mylapore Fine Arts Club, 2002.

Sangeet Natak Akademi Award, 2003.