T.M.Krishna is one of the leading artists in the field of Carnatic Music (South Indian Classical Music). He has been performing for over 18 years and today, he is one of the youngest singer to occupy the top slot in every major music festival. T.M.Krishna belongs to a family of music connoisseurs. From a very early age he was exposed to the classical arts, especially carnatic classical music.
His first concert was at the Spirit of youth series organized by the music academy Chennai (India). Since then there has been no looking back. He has traveled widely in India and abroad and won applause from connoisseurs and critics. He has been on tours to South Africa, North America, South East Asia, Australia and the Middle East numerous times.
He has received numerous awards and titles from many leading organizations. He has released many music albums from leading audio companies like Magna sound, H.M.V., Inreco, Amudham (U.S.A.) and Charsur.
From a very young age, he showed immense talent in the art of classical vocal music. He used to pick up all the songs that his mother learnt during her music classes. Taking notice of this talent, his mother put him under the tutelage of Vidwan Sri Seetharama Sharma at the tender age of 6. He has been learning from him ever since.
He has also undergone special Ragam Thanam Pallavi (a special component in a Carnatic music concert) training under Sri Chengalpet Ranganthan. He had advanced training from Dr Semmangudi Srinivasa Iyer for more than seven years.
His resonant and mellifluous voice and strict adherence to classicism have enriched his art. His music is marked with a very high level of aesthetics in conception and execution. He is known for his tremendous Manodharma (Imagination) and Sampradaya (Traditional) Sangeetha (music). His complete involvement and his ability to unfold ragas with ease have left many a listener lost in his music. His renditions of vilamba kalam (slow tempo) compositions are soaked with bhakthi (devotion) and bhava (emotion) are a treat to every listener.
Krishna has music students from India, North America, Europe and Southeast Asia. He is known for his strict adherence to traditional values of the music system and has very high expectations of his students.
A firm believer in traditional learning techniques, Krishna gives much importance to a firm grounding in fundamentals and expects dedicated practice of his students. Today, many of his students are competing in top music competitions and a few can even be found on the concert platform.
Krishna assisted his guru Sri Seetharama Sharma in many of his composing projects, including musical operas like The Ramayana (presented in The Reunion Islands in 1993), orchestra presentations and choir presentations. He has set music to a number of lyrics and compositions.
Krishna also toured Singapore in 2001 to compose and conduct the orchestra of the Singapore Fine Arts Society supported by a grant from the National Arts Council of Singapore. This program was titled “On a Classical Trail.”
He is deeply involved in research in the field of Carnatic music. He has given numerous lecture demonstrations on various facets of Carnatic music and its history at important institutions. He is presently working on audio archiving the Sangeetha Sampradaya Pradarshini, a musical treatise of very great importance and significance in relation to development of Carnatic music.
In 1998, along with musicians Vijay Siva and Dr Sunder, Krishna authored the first ever Carnatic music appreciation album titled “Learning to Appreciate Carnatic Music.” This album, till date, is one of its kinds and has achieved record sales.
In 2001, along with musicians Bombay Jayashree and Sanjay Subrahmanyan, Krishna authored a book on Professor Sambamoorthy, an Indian musicologist of great international repute, to commemorate his birth centenary. This is a publication of the Music Academy, Chennai.
In 2007, he co-authered the first coffee table book on Carnatic Music, “Voices Within”. The book was written as a tribute to 7 great musicians who had a seminal influence in shaping the Carnatic Music system, and depicted the life and times of each musician while highlighting relevant social, political, and cultural movements of that time. Krishna continues to contribute many articles to various publications and internet sites regarding art, culture, and socio-political issues as well as to his own website.
Awards & Titles
• Ustad Bismillah Khan Yuva Purashkar Award – Sangeet Natak Akademi – 2006
• Yogam Nagaswamy Award – Music Academy, Chennai – 2005
• Sangeetha Shiromani – Shanmukhananda Sabha, Mumbai – 2004
• Title Nada Bhushanam – Shanmukhananda Sangeetha Sabha, Delhi – 2003
• Title Isai Peroli – Karthik Fine Arts – 2002
• Kalki Krishnamurthy Award – 2001
• Youth Award for Excellence – Maharajapuram Vishwanatha Iyer Trust – 2001
• Best senior performing artist – Music Academy, Chennai – 2001
• Title Sangeetha Kala Bharathi – 2000
• G.Ramakrishna Iyer award – Music Academy, Chennai – 1999
• Srirangam Gopalrathnam award – Music Academy, Chennai – 1998
• K.V.Mahadevan award for excellence – 1997
• Title Yuva Kala Bharathi – Bharath Kalachar – 1997
• Ariyakudi Ramanuja Iyengar award – Music Academy, Chennai – 1996
• Musician of the year – Narada Gana Sabha – 1995
• Best junior vocalist – Krishna Gana Sabha – 1995
• Best main performer – Youth Association for Classical Music – 1989
• Spirit of Youth award – Music Academy, Chennai – 1988