Swathi Thirunaal compositions


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Svāti Tirunāḷ Rāma Varma ((16 April 1813 – 26 December 1846) was the Maharaja of the Kingdom of Travancore. He is also considered as a brilliant music composer and is credited with over 400 classical compositions in both Carnatic and Hindustani style He was born in the royal family of Travancore in 1813 and learned English, Sanskrit, Hindi, Telegu, Marathi and Kannada at an early age, along with music. At 16, he became King of Travancore and had in his court famous musicians such as Kannaiah Bhaagavatar (disciple of Tyagaraaja); the Tanjaavoor brothers Ponniah, Shivaanandam, and VaDivElu; COlaapuram Raghunaata Rao; Harikata Meru Swami; and Irayimman Tampi along with a few renowned Hindustani musicians. He is said to have composed about 400 songs in both familiar and rare raagams. His "Navaraatri Keertanais" and "Navaratna Maalika Keertanais" are famous, and his "Navaratna Maalai" contains 9 songs representing the 9 kinds of devotion. He has composed many beautiful raagamaalikas (songs in multiple raagams). His "Bhaavaiyaami raghuraamam" was composed entirely in the raagam saavEri but was made into a raagamaalika by SemmanguDi Shreenivaasa Ayyar. He also composed 65 padams and many tillaanaas. His songs are composed in a variety of taaLams and his varnams are popular. Being a great patron of the dance form KatakaLi, he invited dancers to come perform - and composed swarajatis and jaavalis as well as Hindustani-style songs. Some say that some compositions attributed to him were really composed by some great musicians of his court. His life was short and he died on December 25, 1846, at 34. At least 125 of his compositions are available today.


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