•        Vodafone – Rotary, Parallel Music Fest is an annual event providing a platform for the differently abled artistes to show case their classical music talents

•        This year the Distinguished Differently abled Artist award was conferred on  Sangita VidwatShironmani Shri Suresh Vaidyanathan, the Ghatam Maestro

•        The Promising Differently Abled Artiste was conferred on Yuva Kalanidhi Karaikal  Shri R. Jaishankar, the vocalist.


Vodafone India, in association with the Rotary Club of Madras Coromandel today conducted the 12th edition of their Signature Event the Vodafone – Rotary, Parallel Music Fest.  Vodafone-Rotary, Parallel Music Fest is a much looked forward to event by connoisseurs of classical music, because it provides a platform for the differently abled artists, to showcase their Musical talent. Encouraged by the positive response over recent years, the number of aspiring artists participating in the fest has increased with every edition.  The coveted title of Vodafone – Rotary Parallel Music Fest’s “Distinguished Differently Abled Artiste”, was conferred on Sangita Vidwat Shironmani Shri Suresh Vaidyanathan, the Ghatam Maestro and The Promising Differently Abled Artiste award was conferred on Yuva Kalanidhi Karaikal  Shri R. Jaishankar, vocalist.

Violinist Sangita Kalanidhi Designate Padmashri Smt. Kanyakumari the Guest of Honour inaugurated the 12th Edition of Parallel  Music Fest  and Shri. N. Murali, Co-Chairman, Kasturi and Sons & President – Music Academy graced the occasion as Chief Guest. The artists were felicitated by Mr. Vivek Jain, Head, Sales & Marketing, Vodafone, Tamil Nadu and Dr. T. V. Gopalakrishnan, Carnatic and Hindustani Musician

Padma Shri A. Kanyakumari – Violin, Vidwan Anil Srinivasan – Piano, along with Vidwan Patri Satishkumar – Mridangam, mesmerized the audience with their special performance - “East Meets West”. The concert was followed by a Ghatam ensemble of “Mrittika Vaibhavam” band, lead by Suresh Vaidyanathan.

Parallel Music Fest showcases the talents of the differently abled artistes (both challenged artistes as well as versatile artistes) during the main music season in a city which holds its December Kutcheri season which is unique and unparalleled. While more than 2000 concerts are held in December season at Chennai with 4000 artistes performing in 100 odd different concert halls, our Parallel Music Fest is an exclusive music fest which is inclusive in nature. The invited artistes perform in front of specially invited differently abled audience joining with connoisseurs of music giving them an opportunity to enjoy classical music. This is a music fest with a difference, where we not only cheer the performers but the audience as well.

About Rotary Club of Madras Coromandel


Rotary Club of Madras Coromandel, over the last 28 years has done invaluable service to the visually challenged, through various educational, vocational and social initiatives, under the Karna Vidya Foundation. The Foundation is a unique initiative that is led by the visually challenged and for the visually challenged.   Its main objective is to focus on education, employment and empowerment of the visually impaired.

Addressing the academic pursuit of the visually impaired, it provides a social platform for the vision impaired to discuss, exchange ideas and implement suggestions.  The foundation is led by the visually impaired and they work with volunteers, social groups and the Rotary Club of MadrasC oromandel to deliver on their mission.  

The Foundation sensitizes the community in avenues of health, hygiene and sports and addresses key needs of the visually impaired and works in creating an economic roadmap for them.   By providing two reading centers, a digital library and a technology center, the foundation works in educating and empowering its audience and making them job ready,   thereby providing holistic approach to the needs of the graduating students.   It works with many industry forums and representatives in constantly upgrading the course content and specific skillrelated training. 

The foundation also counsels the students and their parents through a planned reach out mechanism.   It works on changing the mindset of people to vision impaired and creates a positive environment to encourage the visually impaired.  It gives them the confidence much needed to pursue their career interests.   As a result, in the last few years, Karna Vidya has become a thought leader in this space.

Constantly upgrading the technology and keeping in tune with the rapid technological advancement, Karna Vidya Foundation has partnered with some very credible names like Enable India, Daisy Forum of India, Book Share International (an online library for print disabled),Computer and Internet Society (CIS).   It is supported by volunteers of Outreach – a social initiative by Cognizant Technologies.

The students are provided hostel facilities & food and conveyance support during their training period.  They are then trained on specific job related programs.  As a result facilitating employment opportunities for hundreds of students.   In 2016, close to 40 students have beenplaced in companies like Amazon, TCS, and Scope E Knowledge etc. The future plans including creating an online digital library, up gradation of the technology center, and reaching out to the visually impaired across the world.


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