Kurnool: Dr Sreepada Pinakapani, noted Carnatic classical exponent, guru to well-known musicians, and professor of medicine, died at a hospital in Kurnool on Monday evening. He had been ailing for some time.
Dr Pinakapani, 100, is survived by three sons and three daughters. A medical doctor, Dr Pinakapani was also an administrator and professor in medicine, and a Carnatic musician of note.
Dr Pinakapani performed at major festivals and concerts, and also wrote several books on Carnatic music. His Gaanakalasarvasvamu ran into multiple volumes and contains minute details of the krithis.
Dr Pinkapani was born at Priya Agraharam in Srikakulam district on August 3, 1913. His mother Jogamma and father Kameswara Rao, a Carnatic musician, encouraged their son to learn classical music. He spent three months in the school run by violin maestro Dwaram Venkataswamy Naidu.
He did his MBBS from the Andhra Medical College, Visakhapatnam, and graduated in April 1938. He completed his MD in general medicine in December 1945, from the same college. He also honed his skills in music simultaneously and attended concerts of leading musicians of the time.
He taught medicine at the Madras Medical College and at his alma mater, Andhra Medical College. He shifted to the Kurnool Medical College in 1957, from where he retired as professor.
Dr Pinakapani received many awards and honours for his services to Carnatic music. He was awarded the Padma Bhushan in 1984 by then President Giani Zail Singh. He was awarded the Gana Vidya Vardhi by the Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams on August 3, 2012, on the occasion of his 99th birthday.
He also received the title of Sangeetha Kalanidhi. He was honoured with the Sangeet Natak Akademi Award in 1977. Andhra University honoured him with the title of Kala Prapoorna in 1978.
Following news of his death, Ram Prasad, principal of the Kurnool Medical College, local political leaders and many others paid floral tributes to the doctor-musician at his residence in Kurnool. He has a stage named after him.
Anantapur Tyagaraya Gana Sabha paid homage to the vocalist for his service to society. Sabha secretary K. Gnaneswara Rao recalled that Dr Pinakapani presided over concerts by musical giants such as Ustad Bismillah Khan and Pandit Ravi Shankar, in Anantapur. The concert stage at the Sabha is named after Dr Pinakapani after he performed there in 1975.
He trained Dr Nukala Satyanarayana, IAS officer Jayanthi Natarajan, Oleti Venkatesam, Srirangam Gopalaratnam, Nedunuri, Vasudhara Devi and the Malladi brothers, all of whom have made a mark in the world of Carnatic music.