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Grand Musical Extravaganza by Chicago Tamil Sangam

By Suresh & Usha Bodiwala

Lemont, IL (Oct 30, 2014): Chicago Tamil Sangam (CTS), a non-profit organization, hosted a Grand Musical Extravaganza on October 11, 2014 at the Hindu Temple of Greater Chicago, Lemont, IL. October Music Concert has become an eagerly anticipated annual event for the Chicagoland Tamil community. This year more than 600 people attended the celebration, a testimony to the growing popularity of the musical evening in the Chicagoland area.

The evening began at 5:00 p.m. with a short proclamation by the President of the organization Mr. Somu Thiru, followed by a Welcome Address by Mrs. Shoba & Mr. Prem - Music Program Committee and Thamizh Thaai Vazhthu (Invocation to Goddess Tamil) by Dheepa and Dhivya. Mr. Gangai Amaran was an illustrious Chief Guest for the event. Mr. Gangai Amaran is a prominent musician, prolific lyricist, script writer, film director and actor in Tamil film industry. He is the younger brother of noted music director Mr. Ilayaraaja. Vice President Mr. Socrates Ponnusamy introduced Mr. Lakshmanan, Proprietor of Lakshman Sruthi Music Orchestra. Just before starting the concert, Mr. Lakshman appreciated and thanked Mr.Somu by presenting a Memento for his extraordinary support and help to stage the music concert in other states across USA.

The performers for the evening included the leading singers in the Tamil film industry Krish, Malathy, Roshini, and Velmurugan, accompanied by the Super Singer talents Anitha, Hariharasudhan, Sai Sharan, and Anu. Mr. Gangai Amaran and Krish’s joint performance left the audience spell-bound and clamoring for more with their fantastic voice and repertoire. Mr. Amaran stole the hearts of many not only with his music knowledge, but also with his skills to get the audience involved every minute. Krish sang a variety of songs ranging from the classic Ilayaraaja collections to latest hits like “Adiyae Kolluthae” from Varanam Ayiram, to heavy dance numbers. Velmurugan’s folk rendition was extraordinary and his folk pieces really seemed to shine and win the hearts of the audience. The crowd sang, clapped along, danced, and yelled out requests for the next folk tune. Anu, Anitha, and Roshini’s performance stole the hearts of the crowd. Then came Hariharasudhan and Sai Charan, singing both the evergreen melodies and fast numbers got the audience up on their feet dancing.

Mr. Ashok Lakshmanan (Professional Mortgage Solutions Inc.) has been recognized & appreciated by CTS secretary Mr. Manikandan Gunasekaran & treasurer Mr.Prasad Rajaram and special award presented by Chief Guest Mr. Gangai Amaran for his long term relationship & continuous sponsorship to Chicago Tamil Sangam.

Finally, Music program committee - Mr.Nambirajan Vaithilingam addressed the Vote of Thanks to Executive Committee & their families for their extraordinary support and to the past CTS board members (Veera Venugopal, Chandrakumar Natarajan, Seeni Gurusamy & Toni Susai,), CTS volunteers (Devi Annamalai, Sujatha Bhardwaj, Rajesh Sundararajan, Swaminathan Balasubramanian & Thangadurai Ramachandran) for their wonderful help in ticket ushering, food serving & stage setup/decoration etc. Also the committee praised the sound management that was engineered by Seeni Gurusamy, Monachan and their associates, and photography by Aruloli Rajaram (www.arthama.com). Audiences from varying age groups seemed to have had a lovely evening. There was never a dull moment during the entire duration of the program which lasted well over six hours. A nominal fare of Indian cuisine was on hand to warm appetites.

Factors crucial to the success of the program were favorable; generous support from sponsors, logistical support from volunteers in setting up the event and in ferrying heavy food items, presence of talented artists, an appreciative audience, and last but not least, the management of the Hindu Temple of Greater Chicago, Lemont, IL.