Dr. V. Krishna, Mridangam Vidwan


Dr. V. Krishna

Dr. V. Krishna is a well-known Mridangam artiste based at Bangalore, India.

Dr. V. Krishna belongs to a family of performing musicians, all of whom are graded artistes of All India Radio and Doordarshan. His father, Ghatam Maestro Late Sangeetha Kalarathna Bangalore K. Venkataram, was his first guru; while his mother, eminent vocalist Gamaka Kala Kogile G. R. Jaya, played a big role in shaping his career as a musician – engineer. His sister Kalavathy Avadhoot is well-known vocalist, while his wife N. R. Harini and sister-in-law N. R. Sharada are an accomplished vocal duet team.

Dr. V. Krishna started learning mridangam under his father at the tender age of seven. He gave his first public performance at the age of ten – providing mridangam accompaniment, along with his father, for the concert of eminent vocalist Sangeetha Kalarathna Seethalakshmi Venkateshan. Later, within a short span of time, he went on to provide mridangam accompaniment to greats such as A. Subba Rao, C. Honnappa Bhagavatar, Dr. V. Doreswamy Iyengar, Dr. R. K. Srikantan, Dr. N. Ramani, A. K. C.Natarajan, B. N. Suresh and others. At the age of 14, he came under the tutelage of mridangam maestro Mridanga Kala Shiromani A. V. Anand for a scholarship received from Ministry of Culture, Government of India. A. V. Anand’s guidance spurred young Krishna onto higher planes of artistic excellence and he continues to be guided by him till date.

Dr. V. Krishna has provided mridangam accompaniment a number of times to three generations of great musicians, which include the names such as Dr. M. Balamuralikrishna, Prof. R. Visvesvaran, T. V. Shankaranarayanan, Trichur V. Ramachandran, Madurai T. N. Seshagopalan, Prof. T. R. Subramaniam,  Neyveli Santhanagopalan, R. Vedavalli, Neela Ramagopal,  M. S. Sheela, Nagamani Srinath, R. K. Padmanabha,  Mysore M. Nagaraj and M. Manjunath (violin duet), Vijaya Siva, Sanjay Subrahmanyan, T. M. Krishna, S. Sowmya  and others.

Dr. V. Krishna has performed in sabhas such as Karnataka Gana Kala Parishat, Bangalore Gayana Samaja, Shanmukhananda Fine Arts – Mumbai, Chembur Fine Arts – Mumbai, Music Academy – Chennai, Sree Krishna Gana Sabha – Chennai, Indian Fine Arts Society – Chennai, Malleswaram Sangeetha Sabha – Bangalore, Sri Krishna Sangeetha Sabha – Bangalore, Thyagaraja Gana Sabha – Bangalore, Nadjyothi – Bangalore, JSS Sangeetha Sabha – Mysore and others.

Dr. V. Krishna regularly performs with top musicians all over the country.  His mridangam accompaniment is marked by soft strokes, deft use of gumukis, intelligent use of arithmetical combinations, keen ability to anticipate the main artiste in addition to the knowledge of a variety of compositions.

Dr. V. Krishna is one of the members of the Laya Lahari Percussion Ensemble founded by violin maestro Anoor Ramakrishna and ghatam maestro Bangalore K. Venkataram. As a part of the ensemble, he has had the opportunity to perform at important festivals all over the globe including a performance at the Rashtrapathi Bhavan in the presence of the then President of India Giani Zail Singh.

Dr. V. Krishna has been bestowed with several prestigious awards, including the Asthana Vidhwan of Kanchi Kamakotipeetam. He has presided over the Young Musicians Festival of the premier organization Karnataka Gana Kala Parishat in 2007 and was awarded the title ‘GANA KALA SHREE’.

Dr. V. Krishna also serves as the Executive Director of Percussive Arts Centre, Bangalore, founded by his father Bangalore K. Venkataram in 1981, an organization working towards promotion and dissemination of knowledge of percussion instruments in Indian classical music among general public.  He regularly organizes International Music Festivals, Seminars and Symposia, Youth Festivals, Children’s Festivals, Percussion Competitions besides Inter State Cultural Exchange of artistes and monthly concerts. He also leads the Percussion Ensemble of the Arts Centre – ‘Vrushti’ (Showers) which is directed by well known percussionist Anoor Ananthakrishna Sharma. He has also given a number of lecture demonstrations on various aspects of thala and laya in Indian classical music.

Dr. V. Krishna obtained his B.E. (Mechanical Engineering) from B.I.T., Bangalore, M.E. (Heat Power Engineering) from Birla Institute of Technology, Mesra, and Ph.D. from Visvesvaraya Technological University, Belgaum, in the area of cryogenic heat exchangers.

Dr. V. Krishna is a Professor of Mechanical Engineering at PES University (however, this is a personal website). He is fondly known as “VK” amongst his colleagues and students. Apart from teaching courses like Thermodynamics, and Fluid Mechanics, he is very vibrant in organizing cultural events at PES University and taking the responsibilities of master of ceremonies. Dr. V. Krishna has also played cricket at university level as an all-rounder, a proof of his multi-faceted personality.