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ISRO chief calls for preserving slow temp in
Carnatic music
CHENNAI, December 15: We live in a speed age. And, there is an innate sense of hurry in whatever we do. Every one appears to be on a fast-lane. This is indeed a cause for serious concern. The Chairman of the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), Mr. K. Radhakrishan, articulated this concern while inaugurating the 88th annual conference and concerts of The Music Academy here this evening.

Pointing to the spreading popularity of T-20 cricket in the country, the ISRO chief said that test cricket continued to be the game for connoisseurs. This applied to Carnatic music as well, he said. Mr. Radhakrishnan, himself a practitioner of Carnatic music, felt that vilambitha layam (slow-tempo beat) must be protected, preserved and promoted for posterity. ``You cannot sing Endraikku Shiva Kripai in rag Mukhari in anything other than vilambitham or athi vilambitham,’’ he said.

The ISRO Chairman pointed to the historical connection between astronomy and music. In this context, he referred to the works of Muthuswamy Dikshitar, who formed part of the famous Trinity of Carnatic music. Dikshitar, he said, brought out his knowledge of astronomy in his Navagraha kritis. He particularly referred to the Surutti composition Angarakam Aashrayamyaham, where the composer talks about Mars as Bhoomi Kumaram.

The ISRO chief was happy to be inaugurating the music festival. He described The Music Academy ``as the universal academy of Carnatic music.’’

TVG’s call
The President of the Academy, Mr. N. Murali, said that the Academy had decided to dedicate all its programmes on December 23 to the memory of Mandolin Maestro late U. Shrinivas. He also informed the audience that Shrinivas’s father had instituted an annual award for the best solo instrumentalist.

Mr. Radhakrishnan presentedthe M.S. Subbulakshmi Award, instituted by The Hindu, to T.V. Gopalakrishnan, the Sangita Kalanidhi-designate this year. Accepting the award, Mr. Gopalakrishnan said that Carnatic music should be made a part of the education system.