Art will not change world if art and artistes don’t change, says Carnatic maestro TM Krishna

Art will not change world if art and artistes don’t change, says Carnatic maestro TM Krishna
Photo: indianexpress.com

IF THERE’S been a visible shift in the discourse about arts and artistes, caste and gender in classical music, and inclusiveness in the age-old traditional, conservative “classical” system, Carnatic musician Thodur Madabusi Krishna has been at the forefront of the reconstruct. His concerts have been a subversion of caste, language, religion, and even the discipline of music itself.

At the Express Adda on Friday evening, Krishna spoke about pushing the boundaries drawn by our social order, how art can be mystical only when it comes from complete awareness of its surroundings, not making classical forms a conserve of certain spaces only, and how politics is an integral part of everything, even music.

In conversation with Deputy Editor Seema Chishti and Associate Editor Amrith Lal, Krishna talked about his decision to challenge the social order — including his decision to not be a part of the famed December Margazhi season in Chennai — and said that he was not always like this. “It was only after a period of time, after I was in the world of music, that these questions that were lingering in my head came out.

The whole journey actually started with singing, the act of making music. The questions were internal and personal. From there, in concentric circles they’ve enlarged into larger questions of society, politics, culture, music and aesthetics,” he said.

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