Saturday, April 18, 2015

T.Bala Saraswati

Bala Saraswati was an exponent of 'Bharatanatyam' Classical dance and also an accomplished singer well versed in 'Carnatic' Classical music.She is remembered for her substantial contributions for the improvement and promotion of the Bharatanyam dance variety.Up to around 1930's this dance form was known as 'Sadhir' and  was  confined as a temple art performed by the community 'Devadasis'.  Only members of that community were trained in it.Bala Saraswati also belonged to 'Devadasi' community and all of her ancestors were well known dancers or musicians.Her grand mother's grand mother 'Kamakshi Ammal' was a dance performer at 'Tanjore' court.Her grand mother and mother were renowned classical musicians.Her mother and grand mother wanted Bala Saraswati also to be trained in music only but she wanted to learn dance and because of her compulsion her family members allowed her to get trained in dance forms also.
She was given vigorous training from the childhood itself by a Guru by name 'Kandappa Pillai' in Bharatanatyam in the mornings and her mother Jayammal taught her music lessons in the evenings.She was also taught lessons in different languages.Later she learnt from other teachers also.
One of her brothers 'Ranganathan' was  trained by the family to become an expert drummer and another  brother 'Viswanathan'  became a flutist.
T.Bala Saraswati(Tanjore Bala Saraswati) was born on May 13, in Chennai,  Tamil Nadu.She had the affinity towards Bharatanatyam  from the childhood itself and when got  trained in that art form her love towards it multiplied.She learnt  in detail all about this dance form and took too much pains and gave extra care  for performing it with perfection.Bala Saraswati got much appreciation from  all corners for her 'Abhinaya' factor (Expressions  in minute forms) and the cuteness of the gestures.
When studied in detail about this wonderful dance form she wanted to give it an uplift and revival.Up to that period this dance form was taught to and performed by females of her community only.She understood that the erotic elements known as 'Shringara Bhava' contained  in larger extent makes it not acceptable to elite classes.She modified it  by removing the vulgar elements of this dance form's  'Shringara Bhava' from the music versus, gestures and expressions.
Meanwhile another danseuse 'Rukmini Devi Arundale' was also  engaged in this same process.She belonged to  another community other than 'Devadasis' but  took the boldness to study this dance form when it was kept at a distance by her community in that period and to promote it in India and abroad.
Bala Saraswati and Rukmini Devi Arundale were the two people responsible to make Bharatanatyam acceptable to all classes of the society and to revive it initially.
After watching her performance the famous dancer 'Uday Shankar' became  much  impressed and he helped her to promote Bharatanatyam dance in North Indian parts.

She performed all over India and received much accolades from the viewers.
Later in the  1960's  she traveled to foreign countries like United States of America,European Countries etc and got the opportunity to perform Bharatanatyam dance in those countries in many places.She took classes to aspirant students and conducted lectures  to explain about all the aspects of Bharatanatyam.
As a Bharatanatyam teacher she encouraged her students to attain perfection in movements,gestures and 'abhinaya'.She reminded and  revealed to her students that dance is 'Sadhana', an intense experience bringing together mind,body and spirit and urged them to practice it  with dedication to attain perfection.
She received 'Sangeet Natak Academy Award in 1955 and 
received 'Padma Vibhushan' Award from Government of India in the year 1977.
T.Bala Saraswati Passed  away on February 9, 1984.

Friday, April 10, 2015


O.N.V.Kurup is a retired College Professor,a gifted Writer and Poet who received the highest literary award 'Jnanpith'.He is a popular Lyricist who wrote numerous songs for Malayalam films,Dramas and Albums.He is an acclaimed elocutionist also.
O.N.V.Kurup(Ottaplackal Nambiadikkal Velu Kurup) popularly known as ONV, was born in Chavara,Kollam to parents O.N.Krishna Kurup and K.Lakshmikutty Amma.He had his schooling at his native place and graduated from S.N.College,Kollam.He studied for his masters degree in Malayalam Literature at University College,Trivandrum.He worked as Lecturer and Professor at various Government Colleges like 'University College Trivandrum,Maharajas College Ernakulam,Women's College,Trivandrum' etc.He worked as visiting Professor at Calicut University also.
His first Poetry book was published in 1946 titled 'Munnottu'.Some of his famous poetry works are 'Dahikunna Panapatram,Marubhoomi,Neelakannukal,Mayilpeeli,Mrigaya,Ujjayini,Swayamvaram' etc.
Some of his Prose works are 'Ezhuthachan Oru Padanam,Kavithayile Prathisandhikal,Kalpanikam,Patheyam' etc.
ONV is very popular as the writer of about 1000 film songs in about 230 Malayalam films and several Drama songs.He wrote songs for the Prestigious drama troupe 'Kerala People's Arts Club(K.P.A.C.) which attained large scale mass appeal.He walked along with  the Left Democratic Front and its views attracted him.His drama songs also  contributed for the revolutionary movements in Kerala  to an extent.ONV was the LDF Candidate for the  Lok Sabha elections from Thiruvananthapuram once. 
ONV Kurup also served as the Chairman of 'Kerala Kalamandalam'.He served as  Executive member of 'Kendra Sahitya Academy' and 'Kerala Sahitya Academy'.He visted U.S.A, USSR, Singapore,Berlin' etc as Indian delegate of International Events held at those places.
He received 'Vayalar Award' in 1982, 'Ezhuthachan Award in 2008'.He received Honorary Doctorate from Kerala University in 2007.O.N.V was selected as the first person for the  'Kadammanitta Award' initiated by Kadammanitta Foundation and was  given to him on 2nd April 2015 at Thiruvananthapuram.
He received Padma Shri in 1998 and Padma Vibhushan in 2011 from Government of India.
The highest Literary Award in India 'Jnanpith Award' was conferred  to him in 2010.
He is the fifth person to receive this award from Kerala and the second person to get if for poetry from Kerala the other Poet being G.Sankara Kurup who received it as the first person to get it after this prize was initiated.The others who got Jnanpith Award from Kerala are S.K.Pottakad,Thakazhy Sivasankara Pillai and M.T.Vasudevan Nair.
ONV Kurup received National Award as Best Lyricist for the film 'Vaishali' in 1989.He won Kerala State Film Award as Best Lyricist 13 times for films like 'Swapnadanam,Ulkadal,Aksharangal,Nakhakshatangal.Vaishali,Gulmohar' etc.
Almost all eminent music directors like 'G.Devarajan,M.S.Baburaj,Salil Choudhary,Bombay Ravi,V.Dakshina Murthy,M.G.Radhakrishnan,K.Raghavan,M.B.Sreenivasan,Johnson,M.Jayachandran

,Ousepachan,Raveendran,' etc composed music for his songs.He kept close friendship with G.Devarajan which was started from his College days.
As a Lyricist he selects the most beautiful apt words and arrange them brilliantly as in a string of pearls such that when gets tuned by a gifted musician it emits enchanting spectrum.All of his film/drama/album songs possess amazing charming quality and profound grand style of language which flows like a clear, cool stream.The  poems and songs which blooms in his garden of poetry has always a sweet fragrance which appeals everyone.
Film entry for both ONV and G.Devarajan was for the film 'Kalam Marunnu' in 1955 and the song "Aaa Malar Poykayil" was well noted which was sung by K.S.George and KPAC Sulochana.
In i966  all Songs in the film 'Karuna' like  "Samayamayilla Polum" and "Vaar thinkal thonieri Vasantha ravil vanna" became hits composed by G.Devarajan.
Songs of the  film 'Adhyapika' composed by V.Dakshinamurthy like "Palli manikale Pallimanikale" was well appreciated.
All songs of 'Kumara Sambhavam' composed by G.Devarajan became hits like "Priya Sakhi Gange Parayoo" , "Pon Thinkal kala Pottu thotta" , "Ellam Siva mayam" etc.
All songs of 'Sree Guruvayoorappan' composed by V.Dakshinamurthy like "Eeswaran Manushyanaay Avatharichu" became hits.
Salil Choudhary was the music director of the film 'Swapnam' in 1973 which contained beautiful songs like "Mane Mane Vili Kelku".
In 1974 the film 'Neelakanukal' had this beautiful song "Kallolini Vana Kallolini".
The song "Nada Brahmamayi" is from the film 'Agnipushpam' and music is  by M.K.Arjunan.
K.Raghavan composed songs of the film 'Yudhakandam' which has  beautiful songs like  "Shyama Sundara meghame".
The song "Onapoove Omalpoove" was a nostalgia from the film 'Ee Ganam Marakkumo' and it was composed by Salil Choudhary.
All the songs of the film 'Madanolsavam' composed by Salil Dada was well received like "Sandhye Kannerithenthe sandhye snehamayee".
All the songs of the film 'Ulkadal' composed by M.B.Sreenivasan like "Nashtavasanthathin thapthaniswasame" and "Sharadindu Malardeepa" are nice.
The song "Thumbi Vaa Thumbakudathin" from the film 'Olangal' is excellent and the music director is Ilayaraja.
M.B.Sreenivasan composed the beautiful song "Chaitram Chayam Chalichu" from the film 'Chillu'.
The song "Thozhuthu madangum sandhyail etho" from the film 'Aksharangal' composed by Shyam received love from all.
All the songs of the film 'Kathodu Kathoram' composed by Ouseppachan like "Devadoothar Padi" . "Nee En Sarga Soundaryame" amused music lovers.
Ilayaraja composed the nice songs of the film 'Yatra' like "Thannannam thalathil".
The songs like  "Sukhamo Devi" composed by Raveendran from the film 'Sukhamo devi' are excellent.
Songs of the film 'Namukku Parkan Munthiri Thoppukal' composed by Johnson caught good response.
All the songs of the film 'Panchagni' like "Aa Rathri Manju Poyi" composed by Bombay Ravi were well received.
Songs of the film 'Nakhakshathangal' like "Kevalam  Marthya Bhasha Kelkatha" , and "Manjal Prasadavum" received good reception.
All the songs of 'Oru Minnaminunginte Nurungu vettam' composed by Johnson and from the film  'Manivathoorile Ayiram Sivrathrikal' composd by M.B.Sreenivasan are highly relished.

The songs of the film 'Aranyakam' like "Olichirikkan Vallikudilil" are melodious.
All the songs of the film 'Vaishali' well written and well composed received mass appeal like "Indupushpam" and "Dum Dum Dum Dundubhi Nadam".

The song "Isabella" from the film 'Isabella' composed by Johnson  are nice.
Th song "Jnattuvelakiliye" from the film 'Midhunam' and the song "Rappadi kezhunnuvo" from the film 'Aakashadoothu' are unforgettable.

The song " Kathil Then Mazhayaay Padum katte" composed by Salil Choudhary from the film 'Thumboli Kadppuram' felt as a shower of honey to the listeners.

A bunch of roses are gifted to the listeners by ONV and Ramesh Narayanan by the song "Oru Naru Pushpamaay" from the film 'Meghamalhar'.
Ilayaraja composed beautifully for the golden lines of ONV for the film 'Kerala Varma Pazhassiraja' like the song "Kunnathe Konnakkum".

A soothing effect and feeling is created by the nice  lines of ONV by equally  good  music by M.Jayachandran for the song "Lalee Lalee" from the film 'Kalimannu'.

53 year old drama song of ONV  " Madhurikkum Ormakale"  is recreated in the film 'karanavar'(2014) and sung by O.N.V.Kurup's grand daughter 'Aparna Rajeev' and 'Najim Arshad'.Aparna Rajeev is an upcoming and  accomplished singer.  

Friday, April 3, 2015


Kapil Dev is former Cricketer and Captain of Indian team who made India win the 1983 World Cup.
Kapil Dev was born on 6th January 1959 to parents Ram Lal Nikhanj and Rajkumari.His family had been living at Rawalpindi and shifted to Shimla after partition.Kapil Dev had his studies at Shimla and from the childhood days itself he started to play cricket.Later he played for Haryana State and was selected to Indian team because of his proficiency.He was Indian team's main striker for the major part of his career and was charismatic in his style of playing cricket.
He was appreciated for his confidence,enthusiasm and smartness and received accolades as an all rounder.
He made his first century scoring 126 runs in 124 balls against West Indies in 1979.He took 17 wickets in bowling for that series.
He took a total of 28 wickets and established as India's premier fast bowler during Australian teams tour of India in 1979-80.
He was made Captain during 1982-83 season and led his team in the 1983 World Cup. India became the Winners by defeating West Indies in the finals.
He was the Captain for the 1987 World Cup and reached the semi finals but lost to England.Kapil Dev left his Captaincy after this event.
He played his last world cup in 1992 when Mohammed Ashruddin was the Captain.
He retired in 1994 as the highest wicket taker of that time with 434 Wickets.
He served as the Indian team's Coach in 1999 and resigned in 2000.
Kapil Dev received Arjuna Award in 1980 and Padma Shri in 1982.
In 1991 he was honored with the Padma Bhushan Award, the third highest Civilian Award in India.
He is recipient of several sports Awards from many Organisations in India and abroad.
He will be always acclaimed and  remembered for leading his team to Victory as the Captain of the team for World Cup in 1983.