First Music School in India

First Music School in India

Pandit Vishnu Digambar Paluskar set up the Gandharva Mahavidyalaya at Lahore on May 5, 1901. It was the first music school in India. Vishnu Digambar Paluskar (August 18, 1872 - August 21, 1931) was an Indian classical musician born in Kurundwad, a small town falling under the Deccan division of Bombay Presidency during British rule, presently in Maharashtra.

Gandharva Mahavidyalaya was run by public support, donations from the richer classes and funds raised by the concerts of Vishnu Digambar Paluskar. The school was a challenge to the traditional teacher-student method of training music where a student lived under the roof of the teacher. Many students from his early batches became respected musicians and teachers in North India. This brought a change in the way people looked at classical musicians. Vishnu Digambar returned to Mumbai in September 1908 to start a branch of the Gandharva Mahavidyalaya. Eventually, the Lahore school was shifted to Mumbai after Independence.

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First Musician to Receive Padma Bhushan

MS Subbulakshmi was the first musician to get Padma Bhushan (1954) and Padma Vibhushan (1975). She was also the first musician to receive the Ramon Magsaysay award for Public Service in 1974.

MS Subbulakshmi was a legendary Carnatic musician. She was popularly known as Nightingale of India and was famous for rendering of Bhajans. MS Subbulakshmi was born in the temple city of Madurai on September 16, 1916. She began her Carnatic classical music training under Semmangudi Srinivasa Iyer and then Hindustani classical training under Pandit Narayan Rao Vyas. She also acted in a few Tamil films in her youth. MS Subbulakshmi was conferred with Bharat Ratna in 1998.

First Indian to Compose a Symphony

Illayaraja is the first Indian to compose a symphony. Illayaraja composed a full-length western classical symphony in July 1993. The hour long symphony was composed by him in one month. Illayaraja is the first Asian whose symphony was performed by John Scott of the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra which is patronized by Queen Elizabeth and whose president is Lord Yehudi Menuhin.

Illayaraja is also a famous film composer, singer, and lyricist. He has composed over 4,000 songs and provided background music for more than 800 Indian films in various languages. He has thrice won the National Film Award for Best Music Director.

First Hindi Rap Album

First Hindi Rap Album was "Thanda Thanda Pani" by Harjeet Singh Sehgal, popularly known as Baba Sehgal. The album was a remake of "Ice Ice Baby" by Vanilla Ice. The album recorded sales of more than 30,000 copies.

Baba Sehgal is an engineer by profession. His first Album was Dilruba (1990) followed by Alibaba (1991). Thanda Thanda Pani was his third album. His music video Dil Dhadke had the distinction of being the first Indian music video ever to be shown on MTV Asia. Baba Sehgal has appeared in the main lead in the Hindi Film "Miss 420". He has also given music for the movies "Dance Party" and "Bhoot Uncle".

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