Chennai: There are hardly people in Nanganallur in the city suburb who will not know the famous Rotarian and philanthropist, S V Ramani.
He was also the founder of Ranjani Hall which conducts concerts, bhajans and dramas for residents in the locality.
Ramani promoted music, fine arts and culture, with an objective of bringing to light the best talent in the area. He had honoured over 100 musicians, artistes and actors in the last few years. Even after his demise in December 2017, his family members are continuing the good work done by him. News Today got in touch with his son V Murali to know more.
Q: It seems you are organising a host of programmes in Ranjani Hall. Let’s know more.
A: After the demise of my father, my mother Saroj Ramani, my sister Ranjani and I have taken several steps to promote music, arts and culture. Through Nanganallur Thiagaraja Sangeetha Samajam (NTSS) and Sri S V Ramani Charitable Trust, we are conducting two music programmes every month. In addition, under the banner of Nanganallur Mahaperiyava Satsangam, we are organising discourses and pravachans on Anushams.
Q: Who do you select to perform in your hall?
A: We bring in youngsters and the next leaders of Carnatic music and make them perform. Nanganallur residents have an excellent liking and taste for Carnatic music. These budding artistes are highly motivated by their participation in large numbers. My father encouraged youngsters and gave them opportunity and today there are several musicians who remember him and continue to perform in our hall despite some of them being the leading artistes in Chennai.
Q: How is your selection process?
A: We have Ramanathan Bhagavathar, who is the Secretary of NTSS and a veteran in the Carnatic music landscape. We have Sangeeta Mani Madipakkam Murali who is a famous ghatam artiste. We also have several other artistes who were at the helm of affairs in the past. We discuss with this elite group and decide on the artistes. We take their bio data, listen to their performances, debate and decide to give them an opportunity.Q: How do people receive your programmes?
A: In the past, residents had to go to the main areas of the city to attend such popular concerts. Today, vidwans of Carnatic music visit Nanganallur and perform. This is a great boon for the residents of the locality. After the programme, we also offer simple dinner. We ensure that participants get soothing music for the ear and food for stomach leaving them with utmost satisfaction. In our view, this is a great opportunity to forget our usual routine, stressful life and listen to melodious music. I have heard many of my friends who come all the way from T Nagar saying that they are now thinking of shifting to Nanganallur to enjoy a peaceful life.
Q: Your future plans?
A: We will continue to hold as many programmes as possible and bring in many artistes to Nanganallur which is fast becoming the next Mylapore and T Nagar and will ensure that our residents get to hear the best artistes. We will also add programmes to bring out our rich history of Tamil.
On 21 October, we will host a programme to showcase how ‘Valluvan Thantha Vanpugazh Thirukkural’ can bring happiness in ones life. Dr Thiruppur Krishnan and Dr T S Prema, two prominent and reputed speakers, are ready to thrill the residents of Nanganallur. In December and January, we are planning to stage a drama by TV fame Varadarajan.
We are also discussing with Kambavarithi Ilangai Jayaraj for a discourse. Also, leading and popular artistes will be performing in our December Music Festival and in the Thiagaraja Aradanai festival in January.
Q: Your final thoughts?
A: Nanganallur is already popular with several temples and is the most sought after place post retirement for a peaceful life. We are very keen to follow in the footsteps of our father and wish to continue the good work with the support and cooperation of residents. While we will continue to spend our resources on such programmes, our wish and request is that the residents of Nanganallur also support us by actively participating in all our programmes, shower their blessings and motivate the artistes who perform.
Murali can be contacted at [email protected] or 9849033213.