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Tara Anand Wins Best Teacher Award

Ranjani Saigal

Local violin teacher, Smt. Tara Anand won the “Best Teacher” award given by the Cleveland St. Thyagaraja Aradhana festival.  It is one of the largest events of its kind in North America. The award is very special because it is based on the nominations by students. 

Why did they think their teacher is  special?  ”She has taken me every step of the way from when I was six years old, an ignorant little kid who knew nothing about Carnatic music, through to where I am now, at age 14 and thanks to aunty I have been successful in winning many competitions and gaining an understanding of Carnatic music” says her student Suhas Rao, who has received accolades for his performance from no less a musician than Flute Vidwan Dr. N. Ramani.

Tara has been teaching music in Boston Area – both vocal and violin – for over 16 years and is one of the most sought after teachers in the area. Her teaching is marked by rigorous standards, care and concern for her students and an infectious love of music; she is a community treasure. Many of Tara’s students have made a mark for themselves in the Carnatic music arena. Tara’s students have done extremely well at the annual Cleveland Aradhana competitions and won numerous awards over the years. The prize winners in violin category include Ashwin Gargeya, Suhas Rao, Rasika Murali, Awhin Suryakumar, Ananth Sridhar, Divya Kannabhiran, Ajeya Shekhar and Raghav Balaji. Several of them have won in advanced levels also – Ashwin Gargeya won in alapana category and Suhas Rao has won in Alapana and  Kalpana Swaram categories. In 2004, Suhas was one of the 4 people chosen for “Creativity in Manodharma” for a special ‘Gottuvadyam Narayana Iyengar Award’. Among the vocal students, Vishnu Kannabhiran, Vasanthi Sridhar and Raghav Balaji have won several prizes.

Apart from Cleveland, Suhas and Rasika have won prizes in Great Composer’s Day (CMANA, NJ) competitions as well. There, Suhas won 1st prize in advanced category – as a result he won an opportunity to give a full concert in CMANA 2005.

So did she expect to win such an award? “Not at all. For me teaching is something I do because I love children, I love the art and I would like to share with my children what I got from my teachers. I do my karma, I give till I can give no more...awards are really not important” says Tara. “But I would like to emphasize that this award is really shared by many. It is shared by  my teachers, who taught me not only this wonderful art, but taught me the importance of being a good human being. They taught me to appreciate any good music, no matter who or where it comes from.. This award is shared by my parents, who inspired me, forced me, disciplined me. But for their sacrifices and their iron wills, I would not be here being honored and respected. This award is shared by my students without whom I would not be complete. Behind every successful teacher is a dedicated student and I thank God for having given me students who learn from me, respect me and love me. I appreciate every single student those who try to the best of their abililty at their level, just because they want to make Tara aunty proud. God is kind to give me this award and I I accept it with all humility with the blessings of my gurus, my elders and with the goodwill of all around me”

Lokvani congratulates Tara for winning the award and wishes this great Guru the very best.

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