Oldest among all the Padma awardees, Andhra Pradesh’s 94-year-old internationally acclaimed violin maestro Rama Swamy Annavarapu has been honoured with the Padma Shri award on the occasion of the 72nd Republic Day.
Annavarapu has been providing free violin training for six decades.
Born on March 23, 1926, Annavarapu is a classical Carnatic violin maestro. He is in the fourth line of direct disciples in the ‘guru-shishya parampara’ of Saint Thyagaraja and is a disciple of Parupalli Ramakrishnayya Pantulu.
M. Balamuralikrishna and Annavarapu learned Carnatic music under Parupalli Ramakrishnayya Pantulu. He accompanied Carnatic musicians such as Parupalli Ramakrishnayya Pantulu, M.Balamuralikrishna, Arayakudi Ramanuja Iyyengar, Chembai Vaidyanatha Bhagavatar, G.N. Balasubramaniam, Semmamgudi Srinivasa Iyer, T.R. Mahalingam, S. Balachandar, and Hindustani musicians Vinayakrao Patwardhan, Bhimsen Joshi, Jasraj to national and international venues.
He invented new ‘Ragas’ and ‘Talams’ such as ‘Vandana Ragam’, ‘SriDurga Ragam’, ‘Tinetradi Tala’ and ‘Vedadi Tala’. He is teaching students free of cost.
He gave lectures on music in countries such as the USA, Canada, UK, France, Muscat, Bahrain, Dubai, Singapore, Malaysia, Doha, Sri Lanka.
Annavarapu is among the 119 recipients whom the Government on Monday selected for the Padma awards — one of the highest civilian awards in the country.
The Union Ministry of Home Affairs on Monday announced the awards that include seven Padma Vibhushan awards, 10 Padma Bhushan awards, and 102 Padma Shri awards.
Padma Vibhushan is the country’s second-highest civilian award, followed by the Padma Bhushan, the third-highest civilian award, and the Padma Sri, the fourth in the series of civilian awards.
The Padma Vibhushan is awarded for exceptional and distinguished service, the Padma Bhushan for distinguished service of high order, and the Padma Shri for distinguished service in any field.
The awards are conferred by the President at a ceremonial function held at Rashtrapati Bhavan, usually in March or April every year.