Who is involved?
Ramkumar Jagadeesan – (FOUNDER / DIRECTOR)
Ramkumar is a self-taught music composer/songwriter based in Chennai. He was the creative director of Nalandaway Foundation, a non-profit that helps marginalized children find expression through arts. During his time with Nalandaway, Ram worked exclusively with children on musical themes addressing social issues. Shout It Out, a music album written & composed by Ram was produced & released by Nalandaway with the support of UNICEF in 2007. In November 2009, he wrote and composed Kottu Murasae, a theme concert on child rights organized by Nalandaway to commemorate the 20th anniversary of Child Rights Convention. Ram’s music has been an integral part of various productions of frontline organizations including Nalandaway Foundation, UNICEF, World Vision, Steria, TEAM India and IVDP.
Kavita Baliga – (HEAD, Curriculum & Instruction)
Kavita Baliga is an American Soprano, Choir Conductor, Vocal Teacher, TED Fellow, Activist and Entrepreneur working in the Indian music industry with the likes of A.R. Rahman. An alumna of The Boston Conservatory, Kavita joined A.R Rahman’s KM Music Conservatory (KMMC) in Chennai in 2008 as a faculty member and administrator to build the Western Classical curriculum. She founded the KMMC Chamber Choir comprised of alumni and current students. In 2009, Kavita was awarded the TED India fellowship for being a musical pioneer and entrepreneur. In 2010 she became Programme Leader and worked as the official liaison between KMMC and Middlesex University in London to affiliate the two institutes in order to provide KMMC with an internationally recognized degree program. Described as “The Voice of an Angel” by director Shekar Kapur, Kavita’s notable performances in India have included the Martin Luther King (Jr.) Tribute Concert to mark the 50th anniversary of King’s pilgrimage to India. In 2009, she was invited to sing at the premiere of the film “Passage” at the Venice Film Festival in Italy accompanied by the Venetian String Orchestra conducted by Matt Dunkley who described her as his ‘favorite soprano’. In 2014, Kavita founded Desi Music Entertainment (DME), a startup label that focuses on the promotion & distribution of music internationally for artists in India and the U.S. Besides her work as the founder of DME, she is also developing performance programs in India with A.R. Rahman.
Saikumar Prabhakaran – (CO-ORDINATOR, Training & Quality)
Saikumar is a Tenor / Music Producer and an alumnus of KM Music Conservatory, Chennai. As part of KM’s Chamber Choir from 2009 to 2012, Sai was the recipient of the Best Choir Student Certificate for 2009-2010. He was one of the top 7 students chosen by A.R.Rahman to be part of a live Opera – “Si jetais roi” produced by The Neemrana Music Foundation chaired by Francis Wacziarg. His other major performances include the one for “Classic Incantations” by A.R.Rahman in association the German Babelsberg Film Orchestra, produced by LAPP India with support from the German government. Also, Sai sang the lead and worked in the first music album “Mélange” produced by Shekar Kapur and A.R.Rahman for their social music company Qyuki. Most notably, he was part of the choir that performed the “In Memoriam” segment by Hans Zimmer and Esperanza Spalding at the 2012 Oscars. Sai has also rendered vocals for several background film scores of A.R.Rahman. Currently, he is performing Bass & Tenor for NAFS, a Jazz vocal group formed by A.R.Rahman comprising of singers chosen by Arjun Chandy, a prodigy of choral arranging from the world’s most prestigious barbershop group, The Vocal Majority. From 2010 to 2012, Sai worked as Business Manager, Producer and Social Media Manager for A.R.Rahman’s record label KM Musiq. During that time, he also worked as Melodyne & Recording engineer at Rahman’s studio, Panchathan Record Inn. At present, Sai owns Sy9 Studios where he works as a Music Producer guiding songs from initial stages to commercial release.
Georgina Mathew – (ASSOCIATE, Training)
Performed over 250 stage shows and commonly referred to as a “crowd puller”, Georgina has been performing on stage since the tender age of 14. She is known for her dynamic performances and amazing stage presence. Since 2008, she has been training professionally in Western Vocals under soprano Kavita Baliga at A.R. Rahman’s K.M.Music Conservatory. Her credits as a recording artist include several jingles, albums, short films and movies. Georgina’s contagious exuberance, energy and enterprising nature makes her an instant hit among all kinds of age groups, especially children.
Akshay Yesodharan – (ASSOCIATE, Training)
Akshay Yesodharan is a guitarist and tenor with national and international performance experience in Indian & Western Classical genres. He has performed for Oscar winner A.R.Rahman’s Classic Incantations Chamber Choir on behalf of KM Conservatory on a nation-wide concert tour. He has also been part of a one-of-a-kind barbershop quartet conducted by composer & arranger Arjun Chandy. Akshay has credits as a guitarist for numerous artists and albums including tracks for the premiere of Qyuki, a joint venture initiative of A.R.Rahman and director Shekar Kapur. His international repertoire boasts of performances like Bollywood Dreams in Berlin as part of the KM Chamber Choir. Passionate about music and its influence on the society, Akshay is constantly striving to find unique ways of effecting impact with sound.
Snigdha Chandra – (ASSOCIATE, Training)
Snigdha Chandra is a singer/songwriter known for her work both as an independent artist as well as a playback singer in the Tamil film music industry. She has worked with most of the top composers in the industry including A.R. Rahman, D. Imman, Harris Jayaraj and Anirudh. Snigdha is also the co-founder of the video production house “The Shutter Shot Company” that produces advertisement films, music videos, documentaries and short wedding movies. She looks forward to connect the world through art.
Lijo K.J – (ASSOCIATE, Training)
Lijo is a lyric tenor with Foundation & Diploma certificates with distinction in Western Classical and Hindustani Music from KM Music Conservatory founded by Dr. A.R Rahman. A soloist for opera scenes at KM from 2013-2015, Lijo gave several performances with KM’s Chamber Choir. He performed as a soloist at the 10th International Film Festival in Chennai with KM’s Foundation Choir. Lijo’s other notable performances include Western Classical Recital at Alliance Française of Madras as part of Fete de la Musique in 2015 and a cappella group performance at the British Council in Chennai. As a playback, he has sung backing vocals for many of A.R Rahman’s film scores. Also, Lijo has composed music for short films like ‘This is the Moment’ which was selected in the Focus Category at the International Documentary & Short film Festival of Kerala and the Pondicherry Short Film Festival. Notably, he won a contest by Microsoft for composing ringtones as part of the ‘Sounds of World’ project. Currently, Lijo is working as a Western Classical Voice Faculty at KM Music Conservatory, Chennai.