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Story of Tyagaraja, The Guardian Saint of Carnatic Music

18th Jun, 2022

We can confidently say that Carnatic music is one of the most beautiful forms of Indian classical music. Anyone who knows even a little about music would understand that Carnatic music is terrific and has many intricate nuances to master. If you are someone who wants to learn more and that too in the field of Carnatic music, it is imperative that you first know more about the area and then make a choice.

Popular Thyagaraja Keerthanalu

Today there are a lot of options when you want to search for classes that teach Carnatic music online. But without having a good understanding of the field and knowing who are the major proponents of the same, your learning will always remain incomplete. Hence today, we are going to talk about one such great contributor Tyagaraja, who has ensured that the field of Carnatic music is known widely amongst people.

People who generally have a little idea about the field of Carnatic music or even love to listen to it would know that Tyagraja is often referred to as the guardian Saint of Carnatic music. But why is it so, and what makes him so important today? That is what we will discuss and analyze in this article.

Who is Tyagraja?

If we go back to the pages of history, we can understand that Tyagraja was born in 1767. In this earliest practice of music by man was not taken as an excellent sign and a big taboo in the society. However, his love for music has always made him practice more and more. At this juncture, he started to love Carnatic music and wanted to do something entirely indigenous.

If we talk about the contributions of Tyagaraja, the first thing we have to mention is his stunning compositions. We have to say that it was not only Carnatic music, but he even gave equal importance to other fields of Indian classical music. If you listen to this song, you will find that most compositions prove a recurrent theme by him.

There has been a focus on the praise of Lord Rama and how he is the ultimate truth that people should worship often. During the time of Tyagaraja, the concept of kings was prevalent, and he was also an essential entity in the court. He had a very melodious voice, and his unique compositions ensured that every royal event had to start with his performance.

Tyagaraja is quite well known for its specific composition, which is given the name of Pancharatna Kritis or the Five Gems. This particular section consists of 5 designs addressed to the worship of the deity. However, you will see that most of the programs were held in honor of his start with the Pancharatna Kritis. If we trace the history of Tyagaraja, you will know that he was given the name after the reigning king of his regime.

The central idea of all the compositions of Tyagaraja is that music is a way to get connected to God. If you listen to the lyrics correctly, you will see that all of these have been addressed to the almighty and in his praise. Because he belonged to the southern part of India, his contributions to the field of Carnatic music could not even be reciprocated by any other composer of that time.

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Evaluating The Contribution of Tyagaraja in The Field of Carnatic Music

Now that we have a fair idea about who he was, if you want to become a part of this, feel it is essential that you understand the contribution of Tyagaraja and why he is such a prodigy. You will see that his composition became more intricate over the years, showing that he spent more time in practice than anything else.

If there is one name for pure love towards the almighty, then that name must be none other than Tyagaraja. Over the years, he has carefully developed the domain of Carnatic music more intricately. When we talk about Tyagaraja, it is imperative that we do not only talk about him but even his contemporaries, who are equally important. Some of them include Shyama Shastri and Muthuswami Dikshitar. Along with them, Tyagaraja has composed some of the best songs in the field, which are soothing to the ears.

We have to mention in this respect that Carnatic music is a vast field of Indian classical music. Not only have there been a lot of contributors in the area whose presence is significant to date, but we also cannot simply choose to undermine the contributions of Tyagaraja. We must mention in this respect that Tyagaraja has been one of the oldest proponents; hence, his presence in the field is more important than anyone else.


If you want to follow in his footsteps and learn Carnatic music online, then the best name to follow in this respect is Kafqa Academy. We offer online Carnatic music classes to students in the age group of 6 - 9 years and 10 - 14 years.

Our expert music teachers will train your child inclusively to learn this classical music form and make it a part of their lives.

Get in touch with us to know more about the classes or if you need any help while enrolling your child in Carnatic music classes.

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