Music: Meena Kothandaraman
The violin is an instrument that has been integrated into both eastern and western classical music extremely successfully from British Raj times. Within India, there are two distinct styles of violin rendition: one relating to Hindustani Sangeet (North Indian Classical Music), and one relating to Carnatic Sangeetham (South Indian Classical Music). Meena Kothandaraman received intense training from two stalwarts (and brothers!) known for their combined technique for both North and South Indian Classical Music (Sangeetha Kala Nipuna Parur Sri M. S. Anantharaman, as well as Padmashri Parur M.S. Gopalakrishnan). She accomplished this by traveling to India every summer while growing up. She was among a few Indo-Canadians who were privileged to learn Indian Classical Music in such a traditional approach.
Meena has accompanied artists on the violin, and has delivered solo performances across Canada, India and the US. A fond highlight was being asked to give the inaugural performance at the opening of the South Asian Gallery at the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto. Meena is an accomplished vocalist as well, and spends her time performing as well as teaching several students in the Boston, MA area. She has been extremely successful at communicating the beauty and nuances of Indian Classical Music to students of varying ages through workshops and lecture demonstrations. Given the extempo nature of Jazz and Indian Classical Music, Meena has collaborated with many artists in concerts featuring a fusion approach. She is a guest lecturer in Harvard University’s Ethno-Musicology classes