|Birth name||Subramaniam Lakshminarayana|
|Nick name||Mani Concord|
|Names earned||• Violin Chakravarthy
• Paganini of Indian violin
• Record producer
|Physical Stats & More|
|Hair Colour||Salt and Pepper|
• Jazz fusion
• Indo jazz
• World fusion
• Western music
|Awards, Honouners, and Achievements||2012: Lifetime Achievement Award, Limca Book of Records, GiMA (Best Carnatic Instrumental Album – Innovations), Global Indian Music Academy
2011: Uttam Vag Geykar Jialal Vasant Award, Ajivasan, Big Star IMA Award (Best Classical Instrumental Album – Violin Maestros), Indian Music Academy
2010: GiMA (Best Carnatic Instrumental Album – Violin Maestros), Global Indian Music Academy, GiMA (Best Fusion Album – Live at Neues Gewandhaus, Leipzig), Global Indian Music Academy
2009: Tantri Nada Mani, Kanchi Kamakoti Peetham, Kanchipuram, Asthana Vidwan, ISKCON, Bangalore
2004: Viswa Kala Bharathi Bharat Kalachar, Chennai, Sangeetha Kalaratna, Bangalore Gayana Samaja, Sangeetha Kalaa Shiromani, Percussive Arts Centre, Bangalore
2003: Honorary Doctorate, Bangalore University
2001: Padma Bhushan, Government of India, Manaviyam (Millennium) Award, Government of Kerala
1998: Lotus Festival Award, City of Los Angeles
1997: Special Medal of Honour, HH King Birendra of Nepal
1996: Best Composer Award/Commission, NRK P2, Norway, Sangeeta Ratna Mysore, T. Chowdaiah Memorial National Award
1995: Awarder at the World Music Festival at Madison Square Gardens, Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, New York
1993: Nada Chakravarthy, Ganapathi Sachchidananda Swamiji, Trinidad, Onida Pinnacle Award (Best title track composer: Surabhi)
1990: Creative Music Award, Sangeet Natak Akademi
1988: Padma Shri, Government of India, Award for outstanding contribution to Indo-American goodwill, understanding and friendship, Indo-American Society
1984: Sangeeta Sagaram, Cultural Centre of Performing Arts
1981: Grammy Nomination (for the album Indian Classical Music)
1972: Orpheus of the East Kala Samarpana, Alliance Francaise, Chennai, Violin Chakravarthy, Governor of Madras, and Best Western Instrumentalist, IIT Madras
1963: President's Award for Best Violinist, All India Radio
|Date of Birth||23 July 1947 (Wednesday)|
|Age (as of 2022)||75 Years|
|Birthplace||Madras, Madras Presidency, British India (now Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India)|
|Hometown||Madras, Madras Presidency, British India (now Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India)|
|College/University||• Madras Medical College
• California Institute of the Arts
|Educational Qualification(s)||• M.B.B.S. at Madras Medical College
• Master's degree in Western classical music at the California Institute of the Arts
|Relationships & More|
|Marriage Date||Kavita Krishnamurthy (m. November 1999)|
|Wife/Spouse||Vijayashree Subramaniam (died on 5 February 1995)
|Children||He has four children with Viji.
• Dr. Narayana Subramaniam (doctor and musician)
• Ambi Subramaniam (violinist)
• Gingger Shankar (a singer, composer, and multi-instrumentalist)
• Bindu Subramaniam (law graduate and singer-songwriter)
He has one child with Kavita Krishnamurthy
Son- Sai Prashant Krishnamurthy
|Parents||Father- V. Lakshminarayana (Carnatic violinist)
Mother- Seethalakshmi (a vocalist and a Veena player)
• L. Shankar (alias. Shenkar) (musician)
• Late L. Vaidyanathan (musician)
Note: He is the fifth of six children.
|Uncles||• Ramnad Raghavan
• Ramnad Krishnan
Some Lesser Known Facts About L. Subramaniam
- L. Subramaniam is a noted Indian violinist. He is a music composer and conductor who is proficient in classical Carnatic music and Western classical music.
- L Subramaniam started learning music before the age of five while living in Jaffna, Sri Lanka during his childhood period. He learnt violin under the guidance of his father, Professor V. Lakshminarayana. He was called ‘Mani’ by his fellow musicians and family members. He started performing on stage when he was six years old. In a media interview, Subramaniam disclosed that during his childhood, he used to spend most of his time listening to the music of his father. He said,
We were either listening to our parents (especially my father) practicing or teaching my elder siblings or other students. We used to spend most of the time listening to music. My father used to play the violin while my mother sang, and it was a routine life.”
- His family had to flee from Sri Lanka in 1956 when the anti-Tamil riots broke out. According to L. Subramaniam, when his family shifted from Sri Lanka to India then they had nothing with them except clothes and violins.
- In 1972, he was honoured with the title “Violin Chakravarthy” by the Governor of Madras, and later, the western press named him the “Paganini of Indian violin.” The Newsminute
- L Subramaniam professionally started recording his music albums in 1973, and since then, he worked with many prominent musicians such as Yehudi Menuhin, Stéphane Grappelli, Ruggiero Ricci, and Jean-Pierre Rampal. He gave several memorable live music performances with renowned musicians including Ruggiero Ricci, Herbie Hancock, Joe Sample, Jean-Luc Ponty, Stanley Clarke John Handy, and George Harrison. Over two hundred recordings are credited to him along with several solo albums and recording collaborations.
- On stage, L Subramaniam is mostly accompanied by well-known vocalists including Chembai Vaidyanatha Bhagavatar, K. V. Narayaswamy, Dr Sripada Pinakapani, Semmangudi Srinivasa Iyer, M. Balamuralikrishna, and M. D. Ramanathan.
- L Subramaniam performed several live music concerts with highly respected Indian musician Palghat Mani Iyer on the Mridangam. He collaborated with various North Indian Hindustani musicians and artists of other music genres.
- L Subramaniam is known worldwide for composing a Double Concerto for violin and flute in 1983. This was written by him by combining western scales with micro intervals music forms. His music release ‘Spring–Rhapsody’ was composed by him to pay homage to Bach and Baroque music. He has created music in collaboration with well-known orchestras such as Fantasy on Vedic Chants with the Mariinsky Theatre Orchestra, which was instructed by Djemal Dalgat, Turbulence with The Swiss Romande Orchestra, “The Concert of Two Violins” with the Oslo Philharmonic, and Global Symphony with the Berlin State Opera. This also includes his live concert tour to China with the Beijing Symphony Orchestra in Beijing.
- Once, in a media interview, L Subramaniam stated that his father gave status to Indian violin in India. In the same discussion, he added that initially, the violin was introduced in the British era, and it was just an accompanying instrument. He said that his father struggled a lot to raise its structure when his family was living in Sri Lanka, where his father’s journey began. L Subramaniam said,
We lacked the technical know-how as violin was introduced in the British era and its status was more of the accompanying instrument which was in stark contrast to the solo style of playing. My father struggled a lot to raise its stature, we were in Sri lanka and this journey of becoming soloists began from there.”
- In 1988, L Subramaniam composed many memorable songs for the film Salaam Bombay. Later, he went on to write songs for several films including Mississippi Masala in 1991, which was directed by Mira Nair. In 1993, he was featured as a violin soloist in Bernardo Bertolucci’s film Little Buddha, and in 1999, he appeared in the film Cotton Mary, which was released under Merchant-Ivory productions.
- L Subramaniam founded the Lakshminarayana Global Music Festival (LGMF) in 1992 to honour his father Professor V. Lakshminarayana, who passed away in 1990. According to L Subramanium, this festival is based on three concepts – Violins for Peace, Visions of India, and Sounds of India. In 2018, in an interview with a media house, he stated that till 2018, LGMF was organised in more than fifty-five countries under his supervision. L Subramaniam said,
LGMF has featured some of the world’s greatest musical icons since its inception, including MS Subbulakshmi, Bismillah Khan, and Pandit Jasraj, among others. lGMF has been held in over 55 countries so far and will take place in the UK and Germany for the first time this year.”
- In 1999, L Subramaniam released the music album Global Fusion, which was critically acclaimed widely and gave him immense rage for his refined playing.
- Apart from being a highly acclaimed musician, L Subramaniam is also an author who wrote songs for several orchestras, ballets, and Hollywood film scores. He released a book titled Euphony in 1999.
- Several international dance companies have often used his music compositions to use in stage presentations. These dance companies include San Jose Ballet company and the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater. In December 2014, he wrote the stage presentation “Shanti Priya” for the Mariinsky Ballet.
- In 2004, L Subramaniam began promoting the LGMF by touring worldwide and conducting live music concerts in the US (Lincoln Center, New York), the Asian Pacific region including in Perth, Australia, at the Esplanade, Singapore, the Sri Dewan Penang Hall in Penang and the Putra World Trade Centre in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. In 2005, violin maestro Arve Tellefsen, the Oslo Camerata, Stanley Clarke, George Duke, Al Jarreau, Earl Klugh, and Ravi Coltrane performed with Subramaniam at this festival to promote the same.
- In September 2007, L Subramaniam performed with the Fairfax Symphony Orchestra, Warrenton Chorale and Carnatic percussionists and played “The Freedom Symphony” which gave him a strong ovation.
- L Subramaniam is associated with music composer A. R. Rahman in the company KM Music Conservatory in Kodambakkam, Chennai on its advisory board.
- His first wife, Viji Shankar worked as an announcer on the AIR and DD. She was a trained classical singer who lent her voice to many films such as “Salaam Bombay” and “Mississippi Masala.” She graduated in music from the California Institute of Arts. She had her own music label “Viji Records” under which she composed and sang several songs.
- In 2011, L Subramaniam performed at the United Nations, and in the following year, on 24 October, he was invited as a Special Guest Artist with Stevie Wonder, an American singer and songwriter, at the UN. It was a concert organised by Stevie Wonder to promote the peace agenda. During this occasion, a musician and his colleague, Yehudi Menuhin, praised Subramaniam’s music compositions. Yehudi Menuhin said,
I find nothing more inspiring than the music making of my very great colleague Subramaniam. Each time I listen to him, I am carried away in wonderment.”
- Once, in a media conversation, Subramaniam was asked about his musical achievements. He then replied that it was an eternal quest. He said,
Music is a vast ocean and no one can claim to know it all. The more you know, the more you realise how little you know. It is an eternal quest.”
- In 2007, a music school was established by Subramaniam and his wife under their charity named the Subramaniam Foundation. This school was named the Subramaniam Academy of Performing Arts (SAPA), in Bangalore, India.
- L Subramaniam often performs live music concerts with his daughter singer/songwriter Bindu Subramaniam. He gave several live violin duet performances with his sons, Ambi Subramaniam and Dr Narayana Subramaniam.
- L Subramaniam frequently performs live music shows with his wife Kavita Krishnamurthy.
- Most of his family members are musicians and violinists and these musical collaborations earned them the nickname Subramaniam Gharana.
- Several renowned singers and musicians are associated with the Subramaniam family. These artists include Al Jarreau, George Duke, Solo Cissokho, Miya Masaoka, Mark O’Connor, Loyko, Jean-Luc Ponty, Ustad Bismillah Khan, Larry Coryell, Arve Tellefsen, Pandit Jasraj, Dr M. Balamuralikrishna and Corky Siegel. In a conversation with a well-known media reporter, Subramaniam mentioned that he learnt a range of Western music, which helped him to compose his new songs in a better way. He said,
As a composer, I learned the art of compositions in my masters degree. I learned African music, Indonesian music, and various other forms to have the right ingredients in the composition.”