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" Kalaimamani " Dr. KRISHNA BALLESH

" Kalaimamani "
Dr. KRISHNA BALLESH

" Hindustani Classical Shehnai & Hindustani Vocalist  "

" Voice Trainer , Qawwali Sufi Singer  , Mentor , Guru "

" Ghazal & Bhajan Singer , Harmonium Player " 

" Kalaimamani ", " Surmani  " Dr. Krishna Ballesh (born 5 November 1982) is an Indian shehnai player (Benaras), Hindustani vocalist of the Patiala gharana, playback singer and ghazal singer.

Personal Details 

DOB:  5 November 1982 (age 38)

Born: Bailur, Belgaum, Karnataka, India

Settled & Living in - Chennai, Tamilnadu

Native of MK.Hubli, Belgaum District, Karnataka State

Resident of Chennai, Tamil Nadu

Hindustani classical music

Instrumentalist - Shehnai

Vocalist - Classical, Ghazal and Light Music

Akashwani All India Radio and Doordarshan “B. High"  Grade Hindustani Classical Shehnai/Vocalist Artist. 

Website

www.krishnaballesh.com , www.shehnaiballesh.com 

www.tansenacademy.com , Contact: +91 98842 95357

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State Award

  • Kalaimamani Award 2020, The Tamilnadu State's Highest Civilian Award Given by Government of Tamilnadu by Honorable Chief Minister Edappadi K. Palaniswami,

  • Andhra Pradesh Government honored him with SriKalahasti Aasthana Vidwan Award in 2006,

  • India Tourism Varanasi, Government of India conferred Ustad Bismillah Khan KalaRatna Samman 2021 Award in Benaras by Ustad Bismillah Khan's family members, along with Deepika Cultural Society, Varanasi, along with Deepika Cultural Society, Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh. 

 

Government Invites to perform Shehnai:

  • The Government of India, Ministry of Culture,invited Pandit Ballesh and his son Dr. Krishna Ballesh for Sangeet Sangam International Music Festival in 2021 (Senior Musicians) organized  Kendra Sangeet Nataka Akademi, Delhi

  • India Tourism Varanasi, Government of India and Ustad Bismillah Khan's family members invited Krishna Ballesh to perform for 105th Ustad Bismillah Khan Birth Anniversary in Banaras for Sabrang Utsav, along with Deepika Cultural

Education 

B.E (Computer Science) from Anna University Dr.M.G.R. Educational and Research Institute 

Sangeet Alankar from Gandharva Mahavidyalaya, 

Bachelor's and Master’s Degree from Indira Sangeet Mahavidyalaya, Khairagarh, MP, India. 

Sangeet Praveen and Sangeet Prabhakar from Prayag Sangeet Samiti, Allahabad, India.

Honorary Doctorate , D.Litt., (Honoris Causa) by The International Tamil University USA, Maryland. 

Karnataka State Government Junior, Senior and Vidwat Poorva and Vidwat Final (Anthim)

Musical Heritage
Shehnai

Krishna’s first gurus were his grandfather Shri. Sanna Bharamanna Gawai, and Uncle Basappa Bhajantri. His father, Pandit Dr. S. Ballesh, senior disciple of Bharat Ratna Ustad Bismillah Khan sahib,  then opened doors for him to train under the Shehnai virtuoso at Benares. 

Vocal

His father Pt. Ballesh was his first guru, continued Dr. D.P. Hiremath and subsequently, he honed his art under Guru Kodand Salunke Maharaj and Padma Bhushan Pt. Puttaraja Gawai, Patiala Gharana,  at Veereshwara Punyashrama. Subsequently , he received training in Kirana, Gwalior, Beneras and presently learning and performing Rampur - Sahaswan gharana under Padmashri Ustad Rashid Khan sahab & different guru

Fusion, Folk  & Popular Music

Krishna has performed with playback singer and music composer A. R. Reihana for "Indian Fusion Music Festival", held in Samuel Riggs IV Alumni Center, Maryland, United States of America & 

In 2019 he performed in Malaysia with music composer A. R. Reihana for Sufi and Film music festivals held in Malacca.

Film Music

Krishna has played Shehnai for many Indian composers including Maestro Ilaiyaraaja and Oscar winner A. R. Rahman in several Indian movies. He has played shehnai duet in the 2014 Hollywood movie The Hundred-Foot Journey for the track titled “India Calling” along with his father.

 

Contribution to Hindustani Sangeet

Founder : Tansen Academy of Music

To propagate the legacy of his Gurus’ Ustad Bismillah Khan Shehnai & Pt. Puttaraja Gawai, he co-founded Tansen Academy of Music in Chennai along with his father for promoting Hindustani music and shehnai. The institute has over 1000 students who learn classical music - Vocal, Tabla, Sitar, Flute and Shehnai.

 

Krishna is the founder of Tansen Academy of Music, which organises  “Ustad Bismillah Khan Shehnai Mahostav and Ras Barse Utsav'' Music festivals in memory of Ustad Bismillah Khan saab. He teaches Shehnai and classical Hindustani vocals and also screen music songs to Autism Children with Disabilities, and  for Special need childrens and also for Visually Impaired Students and all of them are given the opportunity to perform at the annual Ganayogi Sangeet Utsav and Taan Utsav music festivals.

 

Ras Barse Utsav- in commemoration of Guru Ustad Bismillah Khan, is his brainchild. An annual music festival, it's a vibrant platform to promote Hindustani classical music in Chennai and South. The Ustad Bismillah Khan Kala Puraskar and Yuva Kala Puraskar and Gaurav Puraskar are conferred on this occasion.

 

Awards/Recognition Received 

Because of his accomplished performances, dedication and commitment towards music, he has received numerous awards and to mention few,

 

Classical Music Awards :

  1. Ustad Bismillah Khan KalaRatna Samman 2021 Award (Joint Award along with his son) in Benaras by India Tourism Varanasi, Government of India in Benaras by Ustad Bismillah Khan's family members, along with Deepika Cultural Society, Varanasi,

  2. Kalaimamani Award 2020, The Highest Civilian Award Given by Government of Tamilnadu by Honorable Chief Minister Edappadi K. Palaniswami, in presence of Deputy Chief Minister O. Panneerselvam, Minister for Tamil Culture and Language MaFoi K. Pandiarajan, Chairman Shri. Deva Tamilnadu Iyal Isai Nataka Manram

  3. YuvaKala Sangeet Samrat Award 2020, INDO-NEPAL Music Meditation Series organized by Anu Dhwani Art and Cultural Society, Delhi

  4. Kala Aparanji Award 2020, Given by Pandit Bhimsen Music Foundation Gadag, Karnataka

  5. Smt. Leena Gupta Memorial Award 2019, Leena Gupta Memorial Music Foundation, Silchar, Assam

  6. Mahatma Gandhi Award 2019, Gandhi 150th International Peace Festival, Gandhi World Foundation Chennai Award given in presence of Governor of Taminadu Thiru. Banwarilal Purohit

  7. Sangeet Ratna Award 2019, Sumadhur Hamsadhwani Trust, Preerna Dham, Faridabad , Haryana

  8. Jaipur Ratna Award 2019, Jaipur Ratna Samman Samaroh, received from Legendary Hindustani Classical Vocalist Padma Bhushan Begum Parveena Sultana , Nirmala Auditorium, Jaipur, Rajasthan

  9. Excellence in Vocational and Instrumental Music Award 2018, Given by Rotary Club of Seven Hills, Dharwad, Karnataka

  10. Sri Channabasaveshwar Award 2018, Given by Ulavi Padayatre Channa Basaweshwar Samiti, Karnataka

  11. Sangeetha Sahodar Award 2018, Given by Pandit Raghunath Talegaonkar Foundation Trust and Sangeet Kala Kendra, Agra, Uttar Pradesh

  12. Sri Yogeshwari Sangeet Ratna Puraskar 2017, Sri Yogeshwari Prathisthan, Ichalkaranji, Maharashtra

  13. Sangeetha NadaBrahma Award 2017, Given by Gadag Ganayogi Veereshwara Punyashrama in Association with Kannada Culture Depart, Karnataka Government

  14. Bharat Kala Ratna Puraskar 2017, International Center for Cultural Integration, Odisha

  15. Nudisiri Award 2016, 13th Kannada Nadu-Nudi-Culture Conference, The Annual Kannada Literary and Cultural Meet of Alva's Education Foundation, Mangalore, Karnataka

  16. Bhimsen Samman International Award, 2017 (Joint Award) along his Pandit Ballesh, in Bhimsen Utsav (95th birth anniversary), Kala Vikas Parishat, Gadag

  17. Kala Vikas Puraskar 2016, 100th Birthday of Shehnai Maestro Bharat Ratna Ustad Bismillah Khan Anniversary, KalaVikas Parishad.

  18. Shree BabaHarivallabh Sangeet Puraskar 2015, Receives a honor from Satguru Uday Singhji in Shree Baba Harivallabh Sangeet Sammelan 2015 in Jalandhar at Shri Devi Talab Mandir, Punjab

  19. Navaraspur Utsav Sangeet Sanskriti Award 2015, organized by Kannada and Culture Department Govt.given by District Commissioner of Vijapura

  20. Sundri Samrat Pt Sidaram Jadhav & Pt Chidanand Jadhav Yuva Puraskar 2015, Solapur,Maharashtra

  21. Kala Saadhak Samman 2014, Given by Kala Mandali, Delhi, Vividha 2014, A National Festival of Diverse Cultural Expressions of India, Delhi

  22. Aasthana Vidwan Award 2013, Given by Sri Gnana Advaitha Peetam, from Sri Sathguru Swami Gnanananda Sarasvathi Ammaji, Chennai

  23. Yuva Kala Ratna Award 2010, Given by Sripuram Narayani Peedam, Vellore, Tamilnadu

  24. Sangeeta Kala Nakshatra Award 2010, Given Chinmaya Music Foundation, Chinmaya Mission Madurai, Tamilnadu

  25. Kala Bharathi Puraskar 2008, Shri Kashi Vishwanath Temple, Uttar Pradesh

  26. SriKalahasti Aasthana Vidwan Title 2006, SriKalahasti Temple, Chittoor Andhra Pradesh Government

  27. Smt. Krishna Hanagal Yuvakala Puraskar 2006, Dr.Gangubai Hangal Music Foundation, Hubli, Karnataka

  28. Sangeetha Vikas Ratna Award 2004, from Pandit Puttaraj Gawai Music Foundation, Gadag, Karnataka

  29. Sitar Ratna Ustad Ahmed Hussain Khan Yuva Kala Puraskar 2001, Given by Ustad Ahmed Hussain Music Circle, Chennai, Tamilnadu

  30. SurMani Award 1999, by Sur Singar Sansad, Kal Ke Kalakar Sangeet Sammellan, Bombay, Maharashtra

 

Recognition :

  1. Krishna Ballesh conferred Honorary Doctorates - 2019, (D.Litt, Honoris Cause)along with Legendary Playback Singer's Dr. SP. Balasubrahmanyam, Dr. KS. Chitra, Drummer Dr. Sivamani, Dr. Nagoor Babu (Mano) and after his father Pandit Dr. S.Ballesh in 2017.

Notable concerts - Vocal  & Shehnai 

Sawai Gandharva Bhimsen Mahostav , Pune

Shri Baba Harivallabh Sangeet Sammelan , Jalandhar, Punjab

Delhi Classical Music Festival, Sahitya  Kala Parishad, Delhi

Ganga Mahotsav, UP  Govt., Benaras

Kashi- Vishwanath Festival - Benares

Tansen Sangeet Samaroh , Bhopal

Shehnai Mahotsav  , Bharat Bhavan , Bhopal

Sur Singar Sansad Sangit Sammellan , Mumbai

Pandit Mallikarjun Mansur Sangeet Utsav , Dharwad

Smt. Gangubhai Hangal Sangeet Sammellan , Hubli

Ganayogi Panchakshari Gavayi Sangeet Sammellan , Gadag

Pandit Kumar Gandharv Sangeet Sammellan , Belgaum

Spirit of Unity Concert , Tirupati 

Pt. Motiram - Pt. Maniram Music festival , Ernakulam , Hyderabad

Gaanayogi Swar Utsav , Dharwad

 

Notable Jugalbandi performances

He has played Shehnai alongside many senior artistes like Shri. Vishwa Mohan Bhatt, Ustad Shaid Parvez Khan, Shri. Ronu Majumdar, Shri. Atul Kumar Upadhyay, Rafique & Shafique Khan along with Pt.S. Ballesh and was blessed to have the accompaniment of seniors like Yogesh  Samsi, Ravindra Yavagal, and Subhankar Banerjee. 

 

Accompanied Hindustani Vocals with his Guruji Ustad Rashid Khan Sahab in many concerts, notably :

Bombay Barkha Ritu , Ustad Rashid Khan , Banyan Tree 

Chennai ‘Aadi Anant' Music Fest , Organised by Citi and NCPA

Jalsa - Music for the Soul’, Art and Artistes , Kozhikode , Kerala

Splendor of Master's, Ustad Rashid Khan in Chennai 

The Hindu Nov Fest, Chennai, Hyderabad -  Naad Ninaad , Jugalbandi of Ustad Rashid Khan and Sitar Ustad Shahid Parvez Khan 

Bengaluru ‘Aadi Anant' Music Fest , Organised by NCPA.