Guru Shri P. Kirupakaran
By Arunn Gnanapragasam
‘Kalaividthakar’ Shri P. Kirupakaran hails from a family of musicians, learning vocal under his father Vallipuram Paramasamy. He began his Mridangam tutelage under Shri. M. Sithambaranathan and Shri. S. Mahendran at Anaamalai Isai Tamil Manrum, Nallur. He furthered his training under the esteemed Mridanga Maestro Guru Karaikudi R. Mani, developing such intricate and sympathetic techniques of playing Mridangam. He has participated in Ruphavahini, the Sri Lankan TV broadcasting channel, Norwegian TV, the BBC and Greater London Radio. Shri Kirupakaran has accompanied an impressive list of well known musicians including T. V. Govintharao, Rajkumar Barathy, Nithyashree Mahadevan, Sarumathy Ramachandran and A.K. Karnakaran to name a few.
His magnificent performances as a soloist and accompanying artist both in the UK and abroad have earned him many note worthy reviews. He has also received numerous prizes including the prestigious ‘Best Supporting Mridangist’ accolade for the year 2003, which was awarded to him by Guru K.R.Mani at the Music Festival in India.
Shri Kirupakaran has devoted his time to teaching miruthangam at the London Tamil Centre, Kingston Tamil School and Wandsworth Tamil School. Fondly known by his students as ‘Kirupa master’, Shri Kirupakaran is an immensely dedicated and diligent teacher with a great love and commitment towards this art form and his students. His disciplined but gentle approach to teaching is the paramount reason for the victories of all his students in music festivals around London, the 15 high standard arangetrams that he has staged and ultimately the 10 year success of Avarthanas. He even has protégés that are now teaching in various tamil schools and becoming successful teachers themselves, those of which you will witness tonight.
Teaching is a life long profession to which Shri. Kirupakaran has so admirably devoted his life. He has worked incessantly in not only teaching his students to the highest of standards but also in establishing a deep guru-shishya bond; the product of this sheer hard work and devotion will be so evident tonight.
And finally: The mediocre teacher tells, the good teacher explains, the superior teacher demonstrates, but the great teacher inspires – Shri Paramasamy Kirupakaran is our inspiration.