A Tribute from Mallika Srinivasan

My dear mother, Smt.Indira Sivasailam was a humble, ever-smiling, gracious woman steeped in South Indian tradition, Sanskrit Literature, Hindu Philosophy and Carnatic Music. Blessed with a captivating voice she had an undying passion for Carnatic Music. To her, music was the ultimate means of expression of her bhakthi and exemplifying this belief, she chose as one of her last acts of consciousness to express her gratitude to Lord Kapalaeswara through the song 'NambikettavarEvaraiyaa', a PapanasamSivam composition.

She was a committed patron of the Music Academy and along with my father a regular sponsor of Academy programs and improvement projects. She cherished excellence and was keen that talent should be encouraged and recognized, instituting the G.Ramakrishna Iyer award - an endowment awarded to an outstanding sub-senior vocalist. Acclaim, applause and due recognition, she believed, would inspire many to excel and enrich further our rich heritage. The endowment concert and medal instituted in her memory is our family's humble attempt towards fulfilling her dream.

Amma's interest in South Indian tradition went beyond music and Sanskrit to religious festivals and traditional poojas. She performed her poojas with joy and reverence and Navarathri held a special place in her heart as she was able to perform her elaborate poojas in the morning and greet her family and friends in the evening with traditional manjal, kumkumam and vethilaipakku. These beautifully decorated Navarathrikolu evenings were filled with music and an air of festivity. I am indeed grateful to the Music Academy for making it possible to have this concert held in her memory, during this holy and joyous period of Navarathri.

Amma, I thank you and Appa for creating in me and our family a sense of appreciation for the fine South Indian traditions that have made our lives so holistic, filling it with a sense of purpose and joy.