ShruthiUK is a South Asian Arts organisation established in 2005 and now based in Birmingham, West Midlands.The festival, in its 7th year, is the flagship nationwide festival of South Indian Classical Music and Dance being held in the Midlands.
This is a celebration of musicians and dancers from across the UK and abroad to gather, participate and pay homage to the birth of the great Singing Saint and Composer Thyagaraja.
Thyagaraja Festival is one of the most popular and unique Annual South Asian Classical Music Festival celebrated all over the world to honour and pay homage to the great Singing Saint & Composer Thyagaraja.
Registration is free but mandatory.
Login credentials for the virtual meeting platform will be shared with you close to the event day.
Consul General of India in Birmingham
Dr Shashank Vikram, Consul General of India, Birmingham is Diplomat from the 2004 Batch of Indian Foreign Service(IFS). Dr Vikram is a medical graduate. He did his MBBS from GSVM Medical College, Kanpur. Before assuming the charge of CG, Birmingham, he has served in various capacities in Government of India, in Indian embassies abroad and in the State Government of Uttar Pradesh. He has worked in Embassy of India, Lisbon, Embassy of India, Brasilia and also as Consul General of India, Durban, South Africa. In Ministry of External Affairs he has served in PAI and OIA Divisions. In Uttar Pradesh, Dr Vikram has served as Special Secretary (Health & Family Welfare) & Additional Mission Director for National Urban Health Mission and as Special Secretary(Tourism) & Managing Director, UP State Tourism Development Corporation (UPSTDC).
Her Majesty’s Former Lord Lieutenant of West Midlands, Patron, ShruthiUK
Dr Paul Sabapathy CVO CBE was born in Chennai in India, in 1942 and completed his schooling at the famous public school, Lawrence School Lovedale. He then did his first degree at one of India’s oldest and leading Colleges Madras Christian College. He moved to the UK in 1964. He completed a Masters Degree from Aston University and qualified as a Chartered Management Accountant and Chartered Global Management Accountant, becoming a British citizen in 1984. He joined IMI plc in 1968 as its first non white Management Trainee and after 6 years was the youngest Finance Director at the age of 31 at one of the largest subsidiaries IMI Refiners in Walsall producing 200,000 tonnes of copper a year. After a 28-year career in industry holding senior positions with IMI plc, and retiring as Assistant Managing Director of IMI Titanium in 1996, one of IMI plc largest companies he became the Chief Executive of North Birmingham Community NHS Trust, serving until 2000. He also served on the Boards of National Blood Authority and Standards Board for England, Chairing their Finance Committees. He was Chairman of Birmingham East and North NHS Primary Care Trust for 8 years. The PCT was judged one of the best PCTs in the country. He served on the Boards of both Black Country and Birmingham Heartlands Development Corporations Chairing their Finance Committees. He was a Governor of The Royal Orthopaedic Hospital NHS Foundation Trust and a former Trustee of the world famous Bournville Village Trust. He was awarded the OBE for services to urban regeneration in 1995. In 2004 he was awarded a CBE for services to business and education in the West Midlands. He was awarded the prestigious Lunar Society Medal for his outstanding contribution to public life. He has received Honorary Doctorates f rom Aston University, where he graduated as first batch of Aston Business School , Birmingham City University where he was the first ever non white Chairman of a British University and University of Birmingham. Paul was appointed as the first non-white Lord- Lieutenant in 2007 and held this post until September 2015. In October 2017 in recognition of his outstanding services as Lord-Lieutenant of West Midlands Her Majesty the Queen bestowed her personal recognition by conferring on him the prestigious and rare Commander of the Royal Victorian Order. He is the Patron of the British Carnatic Choir and ShruthiUK, a South Asian organisation based in Birmingham. cal Enterprise Partnership, as well as, a Non-Executive Director of Birmingham Tech; member of the Innovation Birmingham Advisory Board and a former CBI Council member for the Midlands as well as President for the Transatlantic Chamber of Commerce. Julian was awarded in 2018, the Chamber of Commerce Presidents Medal for impact in the West Midlands business community. Julian works closely with government departments and agencies and has represented both the Midlands and the UK on international partnership and trade missions.
General Manager, Touchwood Workman Retail & Leisure
Tony has a rich and varied hospitality/leisure background working in and operating health clubs, bars, restaurants, family entertainment centres and hotels, most recently Hotel du Vin in Birmingham.
Tony is an active ambassador for the region, newly appointed President for Solihull Chamber, Deputy Chair for Solihull BID, Board Member of the Midlands Retail and Hospitality Forum, Head Judge for the Midlands Food, Drink and Hospitality Awards and the Midlands Education Awards and of course proud Board Member for the Birmingham Thyagaraja Festival.
Creative Director at Solihull Radio
Richard has been in the Graphic Design Industry for over 25 years but is already a familiar face down at the station helping out with creative design this past year. A music lover, he says he never misses his Tuesday night fix of the Solihull Rock Show.
Founder & CEO at Education Awards
Jas Rohel is the Founder and CEO of the Education Awards, an annual event recognising the unsung heroes in education by celebrating both the people and establishments making incredible contributions to the sector. She also runs the Education Expo bringing Business and Education together. Recently she has launched Education Rewards Card, a card for people who work in Education and are able to get discounts from the reward partners exclusively for people who work within the Education sector.
Alongside the awards night, Jas works with numerous event sponsors to develop and implement projects in education that directly contribute back into the outstanding work of teachers and educational organisations.
In support of her drive to create more business links in the education sector, Jas is a radio presenter for The Education Show and Talking Business on Solihull Radio. On air, she discusses a vast amount of business and education topics and also interviews key leaders from across the industry.
Sruthi is born into a musical family and surrounded by many musical influences. She developed a keen interest in music from a very young age, often displaying her creativity through her music and drama performances in school. She obtained merits in music and drama from the Guildhall School of Music and Drama and merits in her Grade 8 Western Vocal, Bassoon and Grade 6 Piano from the ABRSM examinations. Her talent and efforts earned her places on the Birmingham Schools' Symphony Orchestra and her school's chamber choir. She has toured with and accompanied notable soloists as a Principal Bassoonist with both ensembles within the UK and abroad. She has a great appreciation for all musical styles and genres and has further explored this by learning Carnatic violin. She started her initial learning from Vid Gnanasundaram Ayyakannu Desigar. She is currently pursuing her violin under Maestro Vittal Ramamurthy. Sruthi is currently a dental student, and she strives to continue her musical involvement by raising funds for charitable causes with her involvement in the Indian arts, her concerts and performances. She is an elected student fellow of the Royal Asiatic Society
ShruthiUK honours women every year, who have contributed or made a huge impact to the community through their skill, passion and commitment in the field of Life Sciences, arts, Community, Politics and Education.
Visalakshi Shankar, an accomplished vocalist and violinist and diploma holder both in Vocal and violin, was initiated into this art at a very young age by her mother Smt.Gowri Ramakrishnan. Presently she is undergoing training under the able guidance of Kalaimamani Sri Neyveli Santhanagopalan.
Recipient of various accolades and awards that include the first prize conducted both for Hindustani and Carnatic music at the All India level, prestigious T.V.Ramanujam Thambura award, Sangita Shiromani award etc. She is a regular performing artiste and has performed in UAE, India, US, Bahrain that include the prestigious Sabhas like Vani Mahal, Narada Gana Sabha, Kartik Fine ARts, Mylapore Fine Arts, Shanmukhananda, Thyagaraja Aradhana Thiruvaiyaru to name a few. Also besides carnatic singing, she is fluent in almost all Indian languages and has sung in many light music shows with Music Directors Vidhyasagar and play back singer Mano to name a few. She has two albums to her credit.
She is currently engaged as curriculum adviser with Shankar Mahadevan Academy conducting quality music audits and creating curriculum content. She has been in the panel of judges for various reality shows along with famous music directors from India. She has composed music for several dance ballets.
Teaching and performing has been her forte and has been teaching for more than 28 years to students of varied ages in classical, light music and violin. Her students have won various awards and prizes at the prestigious sabhas including the Music Academy in Chennai and many are performing artists at the global level.
J K Yoga Kirtana, B High Graded artist of AIR, Bangalore, hails from a literary & musical family and is the granddaughter of Prof. Veturi Anandamurthy, an eminent Telugu Scholar and researcher and the daughter of eminent Veena Vidushi Yoga Vandana. Presently, under advanced training in Carnatic Classical vocal music under the noted Senior Musician, Sangeetha Kalacharya Vidushi Smt. Neela Ramagopal for the past 10 years. Previously, learnt from Karnataka Kalashree Vidushi Smt P. Ramaa, an eminent vocalist from Karnataka.
Yoga Kirtana has received the “Best Individual Performer” award from the Music Academy, Chennai for her performance in the Radel mid-year concert series – Jan 2018. She was also awarded the Bharath Ratna M S Subbalakshmi Fellowship in Music by the prestigious Shanmukhananda Sabha, Bombay – September 2014 to September 2016 and has received the prestigious “Tambura award” from Gayathri Sanmandali Sangeetha Sabha, Guntur in March 2016. In 2015, she was awarded the “Nadayothi Ananya Kala Prathibha Puraskara” . She is the recipient of the Best Concert Award in the Youth Festival conducted by the Vishaka Music Academy, Vishakapatnam as well as Senior and Junior Scholarship from The Ministry of Culture, Govt. of India
She has given various performances all over India including the Madras Music Academy as well as internationally.
Sruthi was born into a musical family and surrounded by many musical influences. She developed a keen interest in music from a very young age, often displaying her creativity through her music and drama performances in school. She obtained merits in music and drama from the Guildhall School of Music and Drama and merits in her Grade 8 Western Vocal, Bassoon and Grade 6 Piano from the ABRSM examinations. Her talent and efforts earned her places on the Birmingham Schools' Symphony Orchestra and her school's chamber choir. She has toured with and accompanied notable soloists as a Principal Bassoonist with both ensembles within the UK and abroad. She has a great appreciation for all musical styles and genres and has further explored this by learning Carnatic violin. She started her initial learning from Vid Gnanasundaram Ayyakannu Desigar. She is currently pursuing under Maestro Vittal Ramamurthy. Sruthi is currently a dental student and she strives to continue her musical involvement by raising funds for charitable causes through her concerts and performances. she is an elected Student Fellow of the Royal Asiatic Society.
Pranathi Ramadorai, a senior disciple of Kalaimamani Guru Smt Rhadha, is a dynamic and seasoned Bharathanatyam artiste with an intense passion for the art. Having been initiated into the art by her Guru at the tender age of 5, she has received the Tamil Nadu Eyal Isai Nadaga Manram Scholarship for young artists from the Tamil Nadu Government, and is also a recipient of the Bharat Kalachar Scholarship for the years 2006-2012. She was conferred the ‘Natya Chemmal Award’ from the Trinity Arts Festival of India in 2019, and has given nearly 35 solo performances at various esteemed stages and Sabhas across India and America.
Her noteworthy performances include those for:
• The Music Academy’s HCL Concert Series
• The Music Academy’s Spirit of Youth Series
• Narada Gana Sabha (Main Hall)
• Natyanjali’s Nartaka and Natya Utsav
• Krishna Gana Sabha
Pranathi has taken part in a number of dance productions, duo performances with her Guru Smt Rhadha, and Lec-dems with her Guru and Dr. Sujatha Vijayaraghavan. She has also had the privilege of performing at the prestigious Cleveland Thyagaraja Festival in 2008 and 2019. An enthusiastic, graceful and energetic performer, she is keen on carrying forward the Vazhuvoor tradition from her Guru.
In addition, Pranathi has had the opportunity of performing several times at Corporation Schools across Chennai, and sharing her art with young children. She has also had the opportunity to work closely (from June 2019 to Feb 2021) with Shreya Nagarajan Singh in presenting art in public spaces through Chennai UCCN and Aanmajothi.
Pranathi holds a Bachelor's degree in Psychology from Madras School of Social Work and is currently pursuing her Masters in Bharatanatyam in Madras University.
Mallika Manocha has been learning Kathak since she was 6 years old. She holds a double graduate degree in the dance form from esteemed institutions like Gandharva Mahavidyalaya, Mumbai and
Bangiya Sangeet Kala Kendra, Kolkata. It has been a 19-year long journey of passion, perseverance, determination and hardwork, under the able guidance of her guru Nrityashri Alaknanda.
She has been an ardent dance enthusiast, having travelled across countries assisting her Guru in conducting Kathak workshops, whilst learning global dance forms like Baroque, Renaissance, Flamenco, and Spanish Golden Age dance. She has also had the opportunity to learn under the Kathak maestro Pandit Birju Maharaj, along with various other eminent Kathak exponents. Mallika has also trained beginners in the basics of Kathak, laying the foundational stone for young dancers to pursue the art form. She has played an active role in organising, managing, and supervising the conduct of Sanskriti Pratibha Utsav, an annual international dance competition organised by her Guru's academy since the last 6 years.
She keeps a keen sense of rhythm and music and had pioneered the Indian Classical Dance society during the tenure of her Undergraduate degree from University of Delhi, India. Withholding the position of Vice-President of the society, she choreographed several dance pieces for inter and intra-college events. 'Breathless' being one such choreography, reflecting upon the concept of love and separation, playing heavily on the aspects of nature, which was widely applauded and incorporated into the college's promotional content. Mallika has made her mark with her art not only nationally but across borders; Singapore, Poland, France and UK. She has recently completed her MBA from BCU, but nothing could deter her passion for dance and the legacy of Kathak, no matter what part of the world it may be.
The Indian Classical Dance is often regarded as a pure form of worship and meditation. The performers of Indian Classical Dance, despite different backgrounds and forms, have played a crucial role in presenting India to the forefront of the World stage. And dedicating herself wholeheartedly to such art is both a service and a pleasure for the young Bharathanatyam dancer Saishruthi Krishnaswamy.
Saishruthi Krishnaswamy, with a solid training in Bharatanatyam of the famed Kalakshetra style under the tutelage of renowned Bharatanatyam Choreographer, Teacher and Performer Guru Smt. Mahalakshmi Ashwin did her arangetram in 2011 at Sri Krishna Gana Sabha, continues her journey with her chosen medium of expression and trying to explore the inner meaning and happiness by performing and experimenting wholeheartedly with sincerity.
She is currently pursuing post graduation in the field of Intellectual Property Law in SoEL, The Tamil Nadu Dr.Ambedkar Law University, Chennai started her Natyam journey at the tender age of five and became a part of Tapas Academy for Classical Fine Arts from April 2006.
Saishruthi as a performer has played significant lead roles in almost all of Tapas Academy’s thematic and repertory’s ensemble productions to great acclaim. Saishruthi also had opportunities to perform few of the above mentioned thematic productions along with some of Kalakshetra’s professionals during various other occasions.
She has also performed many solo repertoires in these years in many Natyam Festivals curated by esteemed Sabhas. Apart from performing, Saishruthi is also a seeker of knowledge and is encouraged to attend many workshops and Lecture demonstrations held by the veteran in the field.
Saishruthi was given “Best Performer Award” by Parthasarathy Swamy Sabha in 2016 and etc.
Swastika Ghosh, an odissi dansuese, having 25 years of dancing experience, has used the language of dance to express her feelings to the audience.
The artist had begun her dance tulelage at the age of 2 from her own mother - Smt. Bipasha Ghosh. Later on, she sought training from both Smt Poushali Mukherjee and Smt. Nandini Ghosal.
The artist has participated in workshops conducted by Odissi eminent Gurus i.e Smt Madhavi Mudgal, Smt. Nandini Ghosal, Smt. Maya Bhattacharya, to name a few where she was privileged to learn self choreographies of the artists.
She was lucky to be a part of Uday shankar festival, Nishagandhi Festival, Rajgir festival out of the various National festivals she had participated. The artist has been confered with State level Gold Medal in Odissi Dance from Sarbo Bharatiya Sangeet O Sanskriti Parishad in the year 2012 and National Yuba Utsab Award in the genre of Odissi in the year 2013.
The artist believes that dance is the best remedy as it acts as both physical and mental therapy to the person facing difficulty in sustaining life.
Smita Rajan is a senior student of Guru Smt. Sunanda Narayanan of the Thillai Fine Arts Academy in Massachusetts. She has been learning bharatanatyam for the past 12 years. She completed her arangetram in 2016, and since then has participated in numerous dance competitions, group productions and workshops in the United States. In 2019, Smita launched a voluntary initiative called "Natya Seva for Seniors". Through this initiative, Smita has been performing Bharatanatyam for seniors in assisted living facilities and senior centers. Smita is a very dedicated student, highly inspired by her teacher and is looking forward to learning further from Guru Sunanda.
She has been honing her Bharathanatyam and Vocal Music skills under the able tutelage of Guru Smt. Mahalakshmi Ashwin at the Tapas Cultural Foundation for more than 15 years now and is progressing well in her chosen discipline. Manasa is a Second Year student of Ashoka University , Delhi.
Manasa’s performances have a distinct advantage of holding the attention of the audience throughout and she has received good reviews for her presentations. Manasa has played significant lead roles in almost all of Tapas Academy’s thematic and repertory’s ensemble productions to great acclaim.
Manasa also had opportunities to perform few of the above mentioned thematic productions along with some of Kalakshetra’s professionals on various other occasions at major Sabhas across South India.
Manasa has also performed many solo repertoires over the last 7 years at many venues. Her Arangetram was held on the 1st August 2014 at The Music Academy Main Hall, Chennai. Apart from performing, Manasa is also a seeker of knowledge and has attended many workshops and lecture demonstrations conducted by stalwarts in the field of Dance. Manasa is also conferred with few Titles like “Yuvashree Kala Bharathi and Lasya Mohini “ etc
Divya Rajan is student of Smt. Sunanda Narayanan of the Thillai Fine Arts Academy and has been learning bharatanatyam for the past 9 years. Divya completed her arangetram in 2018. Divya has performed in dance productions, taken part in dance workshops and dance competitions. Divya looks forward to learning from her Guru, constantly working towards perfection. Divya specifically enjoys dance choreography.
A Carnatic Vocalist, Scholar, Writer & Academic
Dr. Vasumathi Badrinathan is an eminent Indian vocalist, performing in the Carnatic music tradition. Vasumathi was initiated into this art at a very young age by her mother late Smt. Padma Seshadri. She subsequently trained with the renowned guru late Smt. T. R. Balamani.
With over three decades of performing experience, recipient of the prestigious Fulbright Fellowship & the Erasmus Mundus Scholarship, Dr. Vasumathi tours extensively and present her concerts in many prestigious national and international festivals. She was the first Indian classical musician to take Carnatic Music to Baku, Azerbaijan at the International Mugham Festival; only the 3rd Carnatic Classical musician to perform at the world famous Fes Festival of World Sacred Music - Morocco and the first Indian classical musician to visit Puerto Rico. Some of her other notable performances include a performance in Myanmar to commemorate 150 years of Mahatma Gandhi, International Jazz Festival – Baku, French Touch Festival, International Forum of Francophony, World summit of Francophony – Montreux, Switzerland, New Year Festival – Reunion Island etc., besides several music festivals in India.