Shruthi Rajasekar (b. 1996) is an Indian-American composer and vocalist exploring identity, community, and joy. Chosen by The Guardian as a composer "who will enrich your life" in a list spanning centuries, Shruthi creates intersectional music that draws from her unique background in the Carnatic (South Indian classical) and Western classical idioms.
Shruthi is a 2023 Jerome Hill Artist Fellow. Her compositions have won numerous honors, including the 2020 KHORIKOS ORTUS International Award, the 2018 Composers Guild of New Jersey Award, and the 2018 Global Women in Music Award from the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights & Donne in Musica Adkins Chiti Foundation. In 2020, Shruthi was named a "Rising Star" by the BBC Music Magazine. Performed across North America, Europe, and Asia, her music has reached hundreds of thousands of listeners on Spotify's Classical Releases, BBC Radio 3, Classical MPR (Minnesota, USA), WSMR Classical (Florida, USA), and WWFM Classical (Mid-Atlantic region, USA). Shruthi's diverse output is inspired by her dual musical training and diasporic identity. Recent projects include Sarojini, a large choral-orchestral and Indian ensemble composition that had a sold-out premiere at St. Albans Cathedral, new choral works for VOCES8, The Gesualdo Six, ORA Singers, Seattle Pro Musica, and Yale University's Institute of Sacred Music, and large, chamber, and solo instrumental works for professional and student performers, including a new cross-genre piece premiering at Wigmore Hall in 2024. In addition to working with today's leading musicians, Shruthi is passionate about composing for early performers and has been commissioned by ABRSM to create educational music. Her work has been recorded by the BBC Singers, the National Youth Choirs of Great Britain, Somerville College (University of Oxford), and Queens College (University of Cambridge), among others. In November 2021, her composition for the Royal Scottish National Orchestra Junior Chorus was premiered at the United Nations COP26. Shruthi has been an artist-in-residence at Britten Pears Arts (Snape, UK), Tusen Takk Foundation (Michigan, USA), and the Anderson Center (Minnesota, USA).
An award-winning vocalist trained as a Carnatic singer and Western classical soprano, Shruthi is equally adept in experimental and traditional settings. She has performed at Kampenjazz (Oslo, Norway), Snape Maltings (Aldeburgh, UK), Kommune (Sheffield, UK), Source Song Festival (Minneapolis, USA), and Margazhi Ethnic New Year (Chennai, India), among other venues around the world. Her gurus and teachers are her mother, the internationally renowned musician Smt. Nirmala Rajasekar, Dr. Rochelle Ellis (Westminster Choir College), Jerry Elsbernd, and Patricia Rozario, OBE (Royal College of Music, UK). She has additionally received guidance in Carnatic music, theory, and rhythm from the late vocal exponent Shri B. Seetarama Sarma, veteran musicologist Dr. B.M. Sundaram, and mridangam vidwan Thanjavur Shri K. Murugaboopathi. Honors include “Best On-Stage Presentation” at the national Carnatic Music Idol USA: Season 3 and first place at the Minnesota-NATS Competition.
Shruthi graduated summa cum laude from Princeton University, receiving the Edward T. Cone Prize. At Princeton, she was taught composition and theory by Donnacha Dennehy, Barbara White, Andrew Lovett, Dan Trueman, and Juri Seo. Currently based in Minnesota, USA, Shruthi completed her Marshall Scholarship in the United Kingdom at SOAS, University of London (M.Mus. Ethnomusicology, Supervisors: Richard Widdess and Richard Williams) and the Royal Northern College of Music (M.Mus. Composition, Teachers: Adam Gorb and Laura Bowler). Shruthi serves on the board of directors of new music chamber ensemble Zeitgeist and is an Honorary Music Patron of Hertfordshire Chorus.
Named by The Guardian as a composer "who will enrich your life", Shruthi Rajasekar is an Indian-American musician exploring identity, community, and joy. A 2023 Jerome Hill Artist Fellow, Shruthi draws from her unique dual background in the Carnatic (South Indian classical) and Western classical traditions to create intersectional music. She was awarded the Global Women in Music Award from the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights & Donne in Musica Adkins Chiti Foundation. Shruthi has been an artist-in-residence at Tusen Takk Foundation, Britten Pears Arts, and the Anderson Center. As a soprano and Carnatic vocalist, Shruthi has performed and recorded in numerous traditional and experimental settings. She was a Marshall Scholar in the UK, where she pursued postgraduate studies in composition and ethnomusicology. A graduate of Princeton University, Shruthi lives in Minnesota and serves on the board of new music chamber ensemble Zeitgeist.
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