The Oppilal School of Music and Fine Arts in Chennai presented a three-day festival of concerts and other events on the occasion of Kandhar Shashti Vizha in 2020. It featured performances by their students, and others. There was vocal and instrumental music, talks and short concerts by senior musicians. The multi-talented Revathi Sankkaran was conferred with the title Oppila Mani (Gem Nonpareil) on the inaugural day, which she accepted with humility and characteristic humour.
The school was started about nine years ago by Seetha Chidambaram at the house in the heart of Mylapore, bequeathed to her by her mother Oppilal Achi. Classes in vocal and instrumental music, Tevaram, dance, yoga and theatre are conducted by competent faculty and it has a current strength of about 75 students, young and old.
Several students showed remarkable promise in their short home recordings. The teenager Spoorthi Rao invited from outside to perform, is a rising star and impressed with her poise, maturity and a rootedness in the classical idiom. Endowed with a felicitous voice that courses with ease through akaram, gamakas, karvai and briga, she invests her music with a rich raga experience. Her brief alapana in Begada as a prelude to Papanasam Sivan’s Gana rasamudan, gave a foretaste of the amazing depth and detail of her musical acumen. Saveri was powerful and weighty, though a tad long for the Tiruppavai… read more