Dr.Premeela Gurumurthy
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Dr.M.Premeela was born on 5-10-1954 and her parents hail from Kottayam, Kerala and Tirunelveli respectively. Premeela started to perform Karnatic concerts from the age of twelve and performed at the Thiruvaiyaru Thyagaraja Utsavam in 1969 at the age of sixteen. She joined the Queen Mary’s College, Chennai and graduated in Indian music winning the convocation prize for practical music at the convocation of the University of Madras in November1974.

She then continued to do her masters degree at the Centre of Advanced Study in Indian Philosophy from 1974 to 1976 ( in High second class) and also did an M.A in Indian Music ( passed with overall grade A ) both at the University of Madras. Winning a fellowship from the department of culture, New Delhi. She completed her Ph.D in Kathakalakshepa, a study in which she not only researched the art of story telling in the States of Maharashtra, Tamilnadu, Kerala, Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka but also learned the art to perform musical discourses from veterens of the art such as Embar Vijayaraghavacharya and Smt.C.Banni Bai.

Premeela however started to perform Karnatic music concerts from the age of 12 and learned various genres of music from the following great masters, such as Musiri Subramanya Iyer, T.K Govinda Rao, B. Rajam Iyer, Mudicondan Venkatarama Iyer, T.M Thyagarajan and T. Muktha(Karnatic Music).

She also learned Hindustani Classical from Krishnanad of Kirana Gharana and performed her maiden concert in the year 1984 which was presided by Sangita Kalanidhi Sri. Semmangudi Srinivasa Iyer.

Premeela has also specialized in multi lingual devotional music in languages such as Sanskrit, Tamil, Telugu, Kannada, Marthi, Hindi and Gujarathi.

As a musicologist her specialization is in the areas of ancient Tamil Music, composers and the History of Music. She is both a performing artist and an academician who is at present the President and the Chairperson of the School of Fine and Performing Arts, Professor and Head, Dept of Indian Music, Member Syndicate (2007-2010), University of Madras, Chepauk, Chennai - 600 005.

Languages Known

Tamil, English, Sanskrit, Telugu and Hindi

Teaching Tenure :

• Dr. M. Premeela joined as a lecturer in the Department of Indian Music, University of Madras in 1984 and became a Reader in 1992 and a Professor in 1998 and took over as Head and Chairperson and President of the School of Fine and Performing Arts in 2003.
• She is a Senate and Academic council member from the year 2003 and in 2007 was nominated to the syndicate of the University of Madras by the Governer of Tamil Nadu (2007-2010).

Total Teaching and Research Experience 26 years

Her areas of specialization for talks and Lec-Dems are -

• History/Theory/Practice-Karnatic Music
• History/Theory/Practice-Hindustani Music
• Isai -Tamil from Tolkappiyam,Sangam Classics,Panniru Tirumurai,Nalayira Divya Prabandham
• Tiruppagazh,Kirtana Traditions from Muthutandavar upto Papanasam Sivan
• Musical Discourses On various composers who have composed in Sanskrit,Tamil,Telugu,Kannada,Marathi and Hindi.

Research Guidance

Ph.D – 9 completed, ongoing 10
M.Phil – 40
Papers Published – 50

Courses Introduced after assuming Headship

• M. A Bharatanatyam
• M.A Rhythmology
• M.A Folk Music with Tamil Department
• Certificate course in Karnatic Music under the UICIC ( University Industry Community Interaction Centre)
• Certificate course in Hindustani Music
• Harikatha and Bhajana
• Dance Music