Carnatic Vocalist, Tamil Nadu, India
Date of Birth : 13 - Aug - 1968
Prince Rama Varma, a member of the Royal Family of Travancore, is a direct descendant of Maharaja Swathi Thirunal Rama Varma and Raja Ravi Varma. Varma organises Swathi Sangeethotsavam conducted in the premises of Kuthira Malika, Thiruvananthapuram every year from 6 to 12 January and the Navarathri Mandapam Concerts held every year in connection with the Navarathri Festival at Trivandrum.
Prince Varma fell in love with music of M.D. Ramanathan and Kishore Kumar. He grew up listening to the music of the various great maestros who performed regularly at the Navarathri Mandapam in Thiruvavanthapuram and the constantly updated collection of LP records of Hindi Film Music from his father and sister.
He started formal lessons in music in 1982 from Prof. Vechoor Hariharasubramania Iyer, a senior disciple of Dr.Semmangudi Srinivasa Iyer, who continued to teach him until his demise in 1994. He also studied the Saraswathi Veena under Trivandrum R.Venkataraman for five years and later under Sangeetha Kalanidhi Prof K. S. Narayanaswamy. At present the Prince is undergoing training under Sangeethakalanidhi Dr. M. Balamuralikrishna and has gone on to become one of his foremost disciples. He has had the rare privilege of not only singing in unison with his legendary Guru but also of having Dr. Balamuralikrishna accompany him on the violin when he sang. A post graduate in Commerce, Prince Varma started giving public concerts in 1990 mainly due to the encouragement and support he received from Prof.T.V.Gopalakrishnan who helped him to break free from the royal fetters and perform in public.
Varma is regarded as an expert authority in the compositions by both Maharaja Swathi Thirunal Rama Varma and Dr. M. Balamuralikrishna. He has a repertoire of Swathi compositions which is unmatched by anyone else.Shows & Major Performances
Prince Varma has given concerts all over India and in other countries like USA, UK, France, Germany, Kuwait, Dubai and The Netherlands, to mention a few. His first CD was released at The Queen Elizabeth Hall, London and he has performed at some of the most prestigious venues in Europe. He was invited to perform at the Rashtrapathi Bhavan by His Excellency The President of India, Dr.A.P.J.Abdul Kalam who calls himself Prince Varma's fan after listening to his CD, ‘Thaanam - The Pulse Of The Veena.’ For many years he had associated with the Rotterdam Conservatory of Music offering vocal classes in Indian Classical Music and also voice training sessions.
He frequently gives lecture demonstrations in South Indian Classical Music particularly on Dr. Mangalampalli Balamuralikrishna's compositions.
Prince Rama Varma, Kaudiar Palace, Trivandrum 695003, Kerala, India
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