Violinists, Tamil Nadu, India
Internationally acclaimed Violin Maestros Dr. M. LALITHA and M. NANDINI have been widely applauded as the `QUEENS OF VIOLIN - Weekend'- of the present generation. Popularly known as the `VIOLIN SISTERS', these outstanding musicians have enthralled the audiences with their spell binding music and have been acclaimed as the "ONLY FEMALE DUO IN ASIA to perform the World music, South Indian Classical, Fusion and Western Classical music - Le Mauricien".
Hailing from an illustrious family of musicians, Lalitha and Nandini have the privilege of being the fourth generation of musicians in their family. To quote the renowned music critic Subbudu “`Music runs in their blood, they must have played music even when they were in their mother’s womb. ” Lalitha and Nandini are the torch bearers of a unique musical tradition but yet have evolved a distinct style of their own.
Their musical genius manifested at the tender age of three and have blossomed into a top notch violinist of today. With a career extending over two decades LALITHA and NANDINI are regarded as highly imaginative virtuoso Violinists with immaculate bowing along with dexterous fingering techniques. They have been endowed with a sweet and rich tone, which along with their innate artistry and technical brilliance makes their music unique.There is a rare spirituality about their music which soaked in bhakti bhava has endowed their music with a transcendental quality. Their rare musical insight combined with their innate artistry, technical brilliance and original creativity, has enraptured their critics and connoisseurs alike. The music that cascades from the Duo's Violin's is known to be sublime, brilliant, traditional and celestial. Though much sought after violinists of today, their firm adherence to tradition or sampradaya suddham and patantara suddham adds credit to their style of performance. With their irresistible urge for perfection they have revolutionized the violin playing technique to great heights.
Their music, is envisioned by the sisters as an offering to the divine, which in their musical vogage is a sole endeavor to alleviate the soul which results in an rare aesthetic and emotional musical quality. They enrapture their audience with imaginative improvisations and intricate rhythmic patterns fused with melodic sweetness. Couched in deep classicism, melody, creativity they have set a new standard for violinists. They have specialized in playing varnam-s in different grades of tempo and in playing Kalpana Svara-s in many grades of speed, which is a prominent and unique feature of their style of Violin playing.Shows & Major Performances
As Cultural ambassadors of India’s rich musical heritage, Lalitha and Nandini have traversed the four corners of the globe - spreading the message of global harmony through music. They have performed extensively in Major Music Festivals in India and in other countries including USA, Singapore, Malaysia, Norway, Australia, Nepal, France, Germany, Luxembourg, United Kingdom, Middle East, South Africa, Mauritius, New Zealand, Europe.
Their music has won them several prizes, awards and titles by various organizations in recognition of their talent and dedication in the field of South Indian Classical Music including `GOLD MEDAL’ awarded by His Holiness Shri Shankaracharya Swamigal of KANCHI KAMAKOTI PEETAM, `KALAIMAMANI’ which is the Highest Honour in Music and Performing Arts conferred by the State Government of Tamil Nadu, title of `BHARATHA VIOLIN VADHYA THILAKANGAL’ by His Holiness Sadguru Srimad Shantananda Swamigal in Chennai – 2002, BEST SENIOR VIOLINIST from the both Madras Music Academy, and Indian Fine Arts Society in the same year to name a few.
Dr. M. Lalitha and M. Nandini have been awarded with the US and UK Governments highest coveted award. Dr. M. Lalitha has been awarded the `FULBRIGHT FELLOWSHIP IN PERFORMING ARTS’ while M. Nandini has been awarded with the `CHARLES WALLACE TRUST FELLOWSHIP IN PERFORMING ARTS’ which are highly competitive and prestigious awards. They have been selected as CULTURAL AMBASSADORS and dignitaries to the US and UK respectively.
LALITHA and NANDINI are highly proficient in Western Classical Music, World Music, Trans Global fusion music, musicology and ethnomusicology. They have specialized in the different traditions of world music like the Chinese, Japanese, Indonesian music, African music and drumming, Middle Eastern including the Turkish, Iranian, Persian, Egyptian, Jazz, Latin American, Brazilian, Spanish, Blues, Folk traditions to name a few.
The talented Violin duo sisters apart from performing Violin duets have also collaborated with musicians representing different genres of music like Shahid Parvez, Carl Rathus, Fazal Qureshi, Pirpauke – Finnish band, Sameer Chaterji, Boschbela String Orchestra, SA, Tiruvalaputhur T. A. Kaliyamurthy, Tirupungur Muthukumaraswamy, Ronu Majumdar, Tarun Bhattacharya, Mannargudi Vasudevan, Quatre Bonne String Orchestra, Mauritius, Jazz Musicians Reisa & group, Tenor Boys to name a few. They have also shared the stage with their illustrious uncles.
Dr. M. LALITHA and M. NANDINI have also forayed into the realms of composition writing. Their Trans Global Fusion concerts consist of their compositions, which portray global styles and colours of music which bears ample testimony to their skills. They have done music and have experimented with different media including flms, theatre, dance, dance dramas, opera, orchestra, short films, dramas and tele films.
LALITHA and NANDINI have performed in several Radio and TV networks and have been featured by many recording companies like AVM Audio, HMV, Music Today, Pan Music, RPG, Sony, Kosmic, Dreams Audio, EL. V. Audio, Gitaa, Prashanti Nilayam (live), Raj Video Vision, Sangeetha, Santhananda Sounscapes, Saragam to name a few.
M. LALITHA has been awarded the degree of DOCTOR of PHILOSOPHY (Ph. D) in Indian Music, from the University of Madras for her thesis `A Comparative Study of the Violin Techniques in Western and South Indian Classical Music’ while M. NANDINI holds Triple Master's Degree - one in Information Science from the University of Madras - one in Indian Music from the Mother Teresa’s Women’s University, Kodaikanal and one in ETHNOMUSICOLOGY from the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of LONDON.
Both of them have published books and written numerous articles relating to Music and religion.
A multi talented duo, well versed in foreign languages including French and German their other interests include painting, Tanjore Painting, Fasion designing, social service, writing poems, photography, Yoga, Reiki and meditation.
LALITHA and NANDINI have been awarded several prizes, awards and titles by various organizations in recognition of their talent and dedication in the field of South Indian Classical Music.
Sathguru Shrimath Santhananda Swamigal
Sri V. Lakshminarayana Iyer
Shri. K. Muthuswamy
Semmangudi Srinivasa Iyer,
Mrs. Ramani Baskar
Sri. V.S. Narasimhan
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GOLD MEDAL awarded by His Holiness Shri Shankaracharya Swamigal of KANCHI KAMAKOTI PEETAM for securing the First place in the State Violin competition
Title of SAI GANA MANI awarded by Sai Spiritual Centre, Chennai
Title of YUVA KALA BHARATI awarded by Bharat Kalachar, Chennai
Title of INNISAI JNANA KALA MANIGAL awarded by Sri Kalikambal Kamadeswarar Devasthanam, Chennai
Honoured by the organization MOHANAM as THE MOST TALENTED ARTISTES of 1991, Chennai
TAMBURA PRIZE for the BEST CONCERT of the Music Season, awarded by The Indian Fine Arts Society, Chennai
Title of NADA VINODINI awarded by Sri Ranjani Trust, Chennai.
RAJAMANIKAM PILLAI CENTENARY AWARD for Excellence in Violin Playing by the Sri Ragam Fine Arts, Chennai.
Awarded the prestigious title of KALAIMAMANI which is the Highest Honour in Music and Performing Arts conferred by the State Government of Tamil Nadu
Dr. M. Lalitha and M. Nandini were recently conferred with the title of BHARATHA VIOLIN VADHYA THILAKANGAL by His Holiness Sadguru Srimath Santhananda Swamigal in Chennai.
Maduram Narayanan Memorial Award for the BEST SENIOR VIOLINIST from the Madras Music Academy, 2004-2005
BEST SENIOR VIOLINIST AWARD from the Indian Fine Arts Society Chennai, 2004-2005
Lalitha and Nandini were awarded the title of Asthana Vidwan of the Sri Bhuvaneswari Peetam and Sri Sri Judge Swamigal Adistanam, Pudukottai
Lalitha and Nandini were awarded the title of BHUVANA SANGEETHA PRAVAHINI by the Chennai Om Sri Skandasramam trust for their services and contribution in the field of music
INTERNATIONAL FELLOWSHIPS AWARDED Dr. M. Lalitha and M. Nandini have been awarded with the US and UK Governments highest award. Dr. M. Lalitha has been awarded the FULBRIGHT FELLOWSHIP IN PERFORMING ARTS while M. Nandini has been awarded with the CHARLES WALLACE TRUST FELLOWSHIP IN PERFORMING ARTS which are highly competitive and prestigious awards
Both the sisters collaborated and worked on World music, ethnomusicology and fusion. They have been selected as CULTURAL AMBASSADORS and dignitaries to the US and UK respectively
Honoured as ISAI PUYALGAL in the Murugan Temple, London
Honoured as GANA VARSHINI in the Mahalakshmi Temple, UK
Honoured with Gold Chains in the Muthumari Amman Temple, UK for their services towards Music
Dr. M. Lalitha and M. Nandini were honoured with the title of `Shrividya Tapasvi' by the Tapas Academy and Yuvakeertana Trust for their services to Music and Bhakti Oriented traditional Music