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At 14, Deviprasad's deft mridangam beats bring national honour for Kerala

Fourteen-year-old Deviprasad from Angadipuram in Malappuram began learning mridangam when he was six.

Published: 25th January 2022 06:58 AM  |   Last Updated: 25th January 2022 06:58 AM   |  A+A-

Express News Service

MALAPPURAM: 14-year-old Deviprasad from Angadipuram in Malappuram began learning mridangam when he was six. He has been practising the percussion instrument for three hours every day since then. His dedication to mastering the art has helped him achieve the Pradhan Mantri Rashtriya Bal Puraskar 2022.

On Monday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi virtually interacted with the 29 children selected for the puraskar. Modi also awarded them the certificates digitally using blockchain technology.  Deviprasad attended the function from the Malappuram district collectorate. He was the only one selected for the award from Kerala this year. He was selected in the category of arts and culture. 

Deviprasad was on cloud nine. “I’m really happy for winning the award and becoming a special invitee in a programme of the prime minister,” he said.  “My father teaches mridangam to children in my house. Since my childhood, I have been hearing the heavenly rhythms from this instrument. Those childhood experiences made me passionate about playing mridangam. I want to further improve my skills and become a great mridangam artist.”

Deviprasad is currently learning mridangam from maestro Thiruvananthapuram V Surendran. His experiences of sharing stages with great artists and winning competitions have helped the boy achieve the national honour. His deft fingers and beats had transported people to another world at several famous venues and events including Guruvayur Chembai Sangeetholsavam 2021 and Kozhikode Thyagaraja Sangeetha Sadas. 

He had shared stages with great personalities including Carnatic musician and composer Perumbavoor G Raveendranath and Ragaratnam Mannur Rajakumaranunni. He won first prize in the state-level mridangam competition organised by the Aluva Sangeetha Sabha TASS in 2018.  Deviprasad is a class IX student of St Joseph’s English Medium School, Puthanangadi. He made his arangettam (debut) at the age of seven, playing mridangam for the concert of Gayathri Sivaprasad at Thirumandhamkunnu temple. Deviprasad is the son of Deepesh, a mridangam artist and a clerk of the Thirumandhamkunnu Dewaswom, and Praseetha, a teacher of Al Fathah English Medium High School, Poopalam.

Rashtriya Bal Puraskar

  • Deviprasad’s dedication to mastering the art has helped him achieve the Pradhan Mantri Rashtriya Bal Puraskar
  • On Monday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi virtually interacted with the 29 children selected for the award 
  • Modi also awarded them the certificates digitally using blockchain technology
  • The Angadipuram native was the only one selected for the award from Kerala this year


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