HCL Concerts’ The Carnatic Quest Announces the Next Generation Carnatic Music Stars of India

Chennai: HCL Concerts, a platform aimed at identifying, nurturing and supporting the next generation of talent in the Indian classical performing arts space, today announced the winners of ‘The Carnatic Quest’. A one-of-a-kind contest conceptualised jointly by HCL Concerts and Chennai-based Rhapsody Music Foundation, The Carnatic Quest was aimed at identifying, young prodigious Carnatic musicians across five categories including Vocal, Veena, Violin, Flute and Percussion.

Winners of the talent hunt will now be mentored by the jury members of the contest who are senior artists and maestros of Carnatic music. They will also perform for millions of music enthusiasts that follow the HCL Concerts social media platforms as well as users of the HCL Music app (a mobile app offering one of the most comprehensive collection of Indian classical music for free). Winners will get an opportunity to get featured with seasoned artists in an exclusive HCL Concerts music album. Additionally, HCL Concerts will also conduct trainings and workshops with these artists to enable them to leverage the power of social and digital media, aimed at maximizing their visibility and engagement with music lovers.

Winners of the first HCL Concerts Carnatic Quest include:

• Vocals
o P Vikram from Chennai – https://youtu.be/g3jrafLuwMc
o Abhishek Ravishankar from Chennai – https://youtu.be/EB4qOiIv2K0
o Smruthi Bhaskar from Bangalore – https://youtu.be/1X4tHB7H_go
• Veena
o K R Shrievats from Chennai – https://youtu.be/DVdyTG-UWOE
• Violin
o Adarsh Ajaykumar from Thrissur – https://youtu.be/uKJo5-DIDlo
o V S P Gayatri Sivani from Hyderabad – https://youtu.be/CYU9njNo_b0
• Flute
o Hariprasad Subramanian from Kochi – https://youtu.be/99462qz8xrQ
• Percussion
o Kishore Ramesh from Chennai – https://youtu.be/wEE5F3AD7WI
o Hariharan Sundarraman from Chennai – https://youtu.be/tsd7_2h3i6E
o Sumukh Karanth from Mangalore – https://youtu.be/3-GiPkht-AI

Announcing the winners, Sundar Mahalingam, Chief Strategy Officer, HCL Corporation said,
“Over the last 22 years HCL Concerts has endeavored to identify, nurture and support established as well as young Indian classical performing artists. Organizing The Carnatic Quest has been an important step towards ensuring that talented young artists have access to a platform that can help them reach a wider audience as well as grow as artists with guidance from renowned artists as mentors, who are also the jury for this initiative. The success of this contest is a testament to our efforts being in the right direction and we hope to organize similar programs for other music genres in the coming year.”
The contest received over 800 entries from 175 Indian cities with the largest pool of entries for Vocals category followed by Violin, Veena, Flute, and Percussion which received almost equally distributed entries. The winners were chosen after three rigorous selection rounds held over a period of two months. The last and the final round had 40 entries of which 10 artists were selected as winners by distinguished jury members such as Dr Jayanthi Kumaresh (renowned Veena exponent), Lalgudi Vijayalakshmi (expert violinist), Sudha Ragunathan (veteran vocalist, singer and composer) and Shashank Subramanyam (Grammy-nominated renowned flute exponent). The Jury considered parameters that included elements such as technical knowledge of music, presentation, and communication for winner selection.

Padma Bhushan awardee, Sangita Kalanidhi Sudha Ragunathan, distinguished Carnatic vocalist and also a Jury member for The Carnatic Quest finale said, “Collaborating with HCL Concerts and the Rhapsody Music Foundation, both of whom are devoted to identifying and nurturing next generation Indian Classical musicians, aligns with my commitment towards the field and passion for mentoring young musicians. HCL ensured that as jury members our role was not limited to just selecting the winners, but also included guiding them in their journey going forward. I’m looking forward to interacting with them in the future.”

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