” ACHARYA KALASARATHY ” CONFERRED UPON SUGUNA VARADACHARI
Suguna Varadachari, 70, is a renowned carnatic vocal artist. Her initial training under P.K. Rajagopala Iyer (disciple of Tiger Varadachari) kindled in her a thirst for knowledge and learning for carnatic music in all its grandeur. She solidified her skills under the systematic tutelage of eminent faculty members at the Central College of Music (where she did her Sangita Vidwan course). She found her calling when she got a Government of India Cultural scholarship, which enabled her to study under Musiri Subramanya Iyer. She emerged as a prime disciple of Musiri Subramanya Iyer so much so that when one thinks of the “Musiri Baani” one’s mind immediately gravitates towards Suguna – towards a notion of genius that enables her to bring to life Musiri Subramanya Iyer’s compositions.
Suguna’s thrust is on music for music’s sake (i.e. learning, perfecting, etc.) rather than on concert singing per se. She is an exemplary teacher (practice and hard work being her mantras) who leverages her academic (teacher’s training certificate in music, master of philosophy degree in Indian music) and professional exposure (in India and abroad) to train and mentor students (many of whom are now prominent artistes). Though she has retired after a long stint as a faculty member in the Department of Music at the University of Madras, teaching still casts its allure as she continues to train (privately) and also mentors students in carnatic music courses conducted under the aegis of the Music Academy. As an authority on carnatic music, Suguna is very much in demand –with All India Radio and Doordarshan, as a judge in music competitions, lecture demonstrations, etc.
Suguna’s musical journey is studded with National and International awards and accolades (too numerous to list); her latest being the national Sangeet Natak Akademi 2015 award for carnatic vocals (in the field of music). Suguna epitomizes carnatic music in its classic traditional best as she wows students, mesmerizes audiences, and serves as an inspirational role model for today’s generation of aspiring carnatic musicians.