Shrinivas got his first big break in Gudivada in the Krishna district of Andhra Pradesh, at the age of nine during the Sri Thyagaraja Aradhana festival.

Thereafter his career surged ahead. The Indian Fine Arts Society in Madras afforded him the first major metropolitan concert during the musical festival in Dec 1981. Shrinivas soon felled all before him like a hurricane, as sabha after sabha vied with each other to present this prodigy with the mandolin - an unheard of phenomenon in the halls of Carnatic music. A worldwide concert tour followed.

At the West Berlin Jazz Festival in 1983, he was privileged to give a repeat performance of his mandolin, which was telecast live by German TV. At the invitation of the Sydney Tamil Sangham, he went to Australia in 1984, and then to South East and South West Asia, the USA and Canada. At the Festival of India in Paris, he was allotted one hour to play on the instrument. But when the hour ended, the audience forced the organizers to extend his recital by another hour. Such is the irresistible pull of Shrinivas' art. Leading organizations vied with each other to shower him with honors and titles. In 1983, the Music Academy, Madras, honored him with the "Special TTK Award"

Dizzy Heights

The boy exhibited dizzy heights in his standard of play, which far

Mandolin U. Shrinivas

surpasses what he must have learnt from his guru. Listeners were swept away in the flood of neatly executed touches and rhythmic patterns coming from the young prodigy's hand. Everyone forgot what instrument it was and gave themselves up for listening to the mellifluous melody that flowed out of the little stick of a musical instrument!

 

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