Fond Memories of Ranjani

Vittal Ramamurthy, Chennai

I was shocked to hear that Ranjani Hebbar is not with us anymore. I pen these lines with great sadness.

Ranjani hails from Dakshina Kannada District in Karnataka where I grew up also. I have known her and her family for a long time. Ragadhana, a prominent Music Organization in Udupi was started and run by her parents, Smt. Vasantalakshmi and Sri.Aravinda Hebbar. I have known Ranjani from her childhood days. She would always

show great enthusiasm and dedication whenever I visited their family, or performed for concerts at Ragadhana. I could sense very early that she would become a great artist one day. She initially trained under my sister, Smt. Rajarajeshwary Bhat and Sri. Madhoor Balasubramaniam. She later blossomed into a very fine vocalist in Chennai under the guidance of Smt. S. Sowmya and Sri. Chenglepet Ranganathan.

I had the privilege of working with her closely on a CD, ‘Guruvandanam’ and accompanied her in the Music Academy concert with the same theme. She was very meticulous in everything, from planning to execution. A vast repertoire was her asset, and she could delve into any kriti with ease and confidence. I could envision the depth

of her musical knowledge, creativity and skills during this project. This made me convince my niece, Thanmayee to take lessons from Ranjani in Bangalore. I have heard that she was a great teacher too, who would inspire her students to excel and bring out the best in them.

She always looked up to me as a mentor. When she moved to Chennai, she would visit our home from time to time. My encouragement and advice on professional matters meant a lot to her. Our family has lots of fond memories of Ranjani’s visits, her music, and her humbleness. She will always be etched in ourhearts.

Her music was very classical and traditional. The demise of Ranjani Hebbar is definitely a tremendous loss of a brilliant, young talent in the Carnatic music fraternity.

Article by Vittal Ramamurthy


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