Veena Gayathri
Veena Gayathri is a household name in any musically literate home in India and abroad.

Veena Gayathri was born on 9th November 1959 to Smt. Kamala Aswathama, a veteran veena vidushi and Sri G. Aswathama, a popular film music director of telugu cinema.

When Veena Gayathri was a toddler, her father noticed a popular phenomenon in her when she used to stamp her feet on the floor and sway the anklet bells in tune with any rythmic beat she happened to hear. Her father realized the prodigy in the child. She developed an unconscious attachment to veena and started playing on it for hours together unobtrusively in the pooja room. But if there was any intrusion or disturbance during her veena Sadhana, she used to burst into tears and cry. Her father then started coaching her in manodharma and mother trained her in the intricacies of veen techniques. This is how to veena Gayathri blossommed into a veena artiste at an unimaginably tender age of 6.

She launched her eventful and illustrious career by making her debut in giving veena concert in Karpaga Vinayagar temple in R.A.Puram.

During the year 1968, when Sri Parthasarathy Swami Sabha, Triplicane invited her to participate in their Saint Thyagaraja Festival she was a child prodigy who was hardly 9 years old. Her performance was a resounding success in front of a huge audience of musicologists and experts. Prof. P. Sambamurthy the renowned musicologist instantly hailed veena Gayathri as child prodigy. This was her maiden stage performance which not only got her adulation, accolades and econiums but also launched her on a long and fulfilling musical journey.

Subsequently in the year 1970. She gave another concert in Sri Parthasarathy Swami Sabha again on public demand. She had never looked back from then on.

During her childhood days she was well-known as Baby Gayathri. Her penance on veena for years and years has naturally given her the name Veena Gayathri implying that veena is synonyms with Gayathri and Gayathri is the embodiment of veena. Her admirers who have been enraptured by her melody, bhava purity of sahithyam, thala suddham, layam and lakshanam constitute a great majority of music lovers all over the world.

Veena Gayathri also had her advanced training under the expert guidance of Sangita Kalanidhi Sri.T.M. Thigarajan for 10 long years. According to her, the scintillating performance which she gave in the immediate divine presence of Jagatguru Sri Chandrasekarendra Saraswathi of Kanchi Kamakoti Peetam (reverentaially known as " Maha Periyava" at the age 11 had enhanced the innate divinity in her veena playing Maha Periyava Presented to veena Gayathri a sandalwood crown with "OM" engraved on it and asked her to wear it on her head. His Holiness blessed Veena Gayathri while she played with the crown on her head.

Veena Gayathri has performed in many parts of the world such as, USA, UK, Malaysia, Singapore, Sultanate of Oman, France and Germany. She was invited to perform in the Festival on India celebration in Paris, France and Sri Lakshmi Narayana Global Festival in Berlin, Germany in the year 2002.

Veena Gayathri had also worked with almost all leading music directors of the South Indian Film Industry for nearly two decades.

The Golden Jubilee Celebration of Independence of India at Chennai in 1997 had the BBC sponsoring her veena concert. Mr. Mark Tully of BBC compered the programme and her inimitable performance endeared her to both the Indian and foreign dignitaries who comprised the audience.

She is a veena artiste who had been exploring innovating and discovering new frontiers of music through veena. She has released innumerable albums and CDs and they have all records in the sale of titles in instrumental music.

Her adroitness, dexterity, and perfection in handling each and every theme on Veena, right from Carnatic music to ghazals, Jazz, fusion, pop, folk etc have made her the most versatile veena vidushi we have in the field of Carnatic Instrumental Music today She is the favourite artiste of the connoisseur of Carnatic music as well as the commoner.

Dinamani, one of the leading regional news papers had hailed her as "BOOMIKKU VANDA SARASWATHI" meaning the goddess of Arts "Saraswathi having descended on earth in the form of Veena Gayathri.

She has also performed in various festivals organised by learned vedic scholars and pandits. She is proficient in playing the "sookthas" and "Mantrapushpam" on the veena.

Despite many accomplishments and awards her vision and mission are to visualize spiritualism and experience divinity through veena and reconfirm the belief that veena yoga is definitely one of the means to attain soul-elevation and for eternal communion with the Absolute. Her veena playing is an attempt to reach Para Brahmam through Nadha Brahmam.

The delineation of Raga and thanam the musical contours she traces through her fingers, the tonal modulation, shown by her constant shuffling of hands, the crescendo effect transition from the depths of hush, the effortless ease with which she plays lead one to believe that she energises the veena strings and breathes music into them through her Adhara Chakras with the flow of Kundalini Sakthi.

Her raga alapanas are always oscillating between the Octave scales in a measured manner, crisp and overflowing with captivating grace and alluring gravitational pull. She is one Veena Artiste who can make her instrument sing the Sahityam in its pristine purity like a seasoned Vocalist.

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