Growing up in Hyderabad, Swathi Shaker felt drawn to music at a very young age, and that motivated her to relentlessly pursue this path. Ms. Shaker spoke with The Times about her shining career as a singer and the highlights in her life that filled her with pride.
‘From a very young age, I was very fond of music and had a great passion for singing. My parents’ encouragement and support drove me deep into music, which has been a part of my life for 16 years,’ Swathi Shaker said about her beginnings. She started music training at the age of 10, and trained under various music teachers who helped her find her own voice. While at MNR Indo English High School, she was a regular sight at various inter-school competitions.
Grabbing every opportunity to sing in front of an audience, she won several accolades and felt the joy of performing every time she took to the stage. Her wonderful tone that showed how deeply she felt the music earned her spots in various State and National level competitions in Hyderabad.
Music as a career was her dream, and after completing her high school in Sri Chaitanya, Hyderabad, she opted to study at the renowned arts college, Sri Rukmini Devi College of Fine Arts in Chennai, studying for five years (2007 – 2012) towards graduating with a diploma in Carnatic Vocal & Violin.
When asked about the difficulties she faced blossoming into a professional singer, she explained, “It is quite difficult to come to this stage. Vocal practice should be done at the early hours from 4am and a continuous practice for long hours in the initial stages. We have to follow the voice modulation methods instructed by our Gurus (Masters), which was not so easy at the beginning.
Apart from this, we were advised to listen to the concerts of legend singers and follow them too. Learning classical music helped me a lot in understanding the nuances of music. Kalakshetra, where I pursued my graduation in classical music, taught me a lot.”
Music is a large part of her life and she is committed to pursue every avenue of her interest.
A versatile singer with experience in many music forms; her albums, films and stage performances have captured the hearts of fans with her vocal artistry. Interested in dubbing and anchoring, she has lent her strong vocals to many famous films to create a new experience for the Tamil movie fans. Her appearance in dubbed movies consists of some of the best in the Tamil movie industry.
The names include ‘Siruthai Puli’, a film that starred Ram Charan and Neha Sharma, which was the dubbed version of a Telugu film ‘Chirutha’; Murattu Singam, the Tamil version of Mirapakaya; Ram Charan (Orange) and few others. A recent addition to her success are two Tamil movies, ‘Aayul Regai Neeyadi’ and ‘Kandanam’. A music marvel, she is able to speak and sing in five different languages (Telugu, Tamil, Hindi, English and Malayalam).
When she commands the stage, she looks energetic and masterful, showcasing her vocal range and silvery tone with singing selections in many classical and film-based orchestra shows. Such performances across the continents are still a meaningful part of her career. Aside from a strong freelance singing career, she has released a few albums in Telugu.
Her expansive repertoire includes many visits to Kuwait, which started when she was invited to perform for a non-profit organization called “Voice”. Later, recognition by others saw her perform in many stages with “Kalanjali-Kuwait”, “Frontliners”, “Fankar Arts” and “Telugu Kala Samithi” in Kuwait.
Some of Swathi’s greatest hits in her career happened in Kuwait, she sang amazing duets with renowned singers like Sri Krishna, Sadhana Sargam, Chetan Rana, worked with music director Nikhil and participated in the annual celebrations of Dancing Divas in 2013. Her presence was invaluable at the Fund Raising Program for a cancer patient where she along with other artists did a commendable service for the community.
She remarked on her most memorable achievements, “A certificate from Famous Indian Carnatic vocalist Dr. M. Balamurikrishna, and when I was felicitated at MGR University, Chennai.” Her singing abilities that encompass various styles from Bhajans, Semi-Classical to Light music have earned her numerous awards. The most notable being the 2nd prize at a state level Film singing competition and the1st prize in Malayalam Light Music competition held at Kuwait on May 2013.
The year 2014 turned out to be another great year for Swathi, when she performed as the main singer in the show “Dedh Matwale” organized by the Voice organization on 10 April. Then, she presented a musical night event arranged by Voice and Fankaar Arts wherein she was a delight to watch.
“I like the pleasant climate during winter, and the encouragement and support given by the crowd during my shows,” She said with a bright smile, thinking about her last visit to Kuwait, “I was able to meet Indian Ambassador Mr. Sunil Jain during my visit in 2014.” She has even managed to learn a few Arabic songs. The best advice she has to offer to aspiring singers, “Sing different styles of singing and different languages to become a versatile singer. Listen to music as much as possible and try to bring out the best that makes the audience a fan of you forever.
Music is such a vast subject that one’s life is not enough to study and understand it. Experience matters a lot so never give up singing for anyone and never ever overestimate yourself after reaching a high position.”
Swathi Shaker has gained herself a reputation amongst the entertainment industry as being talented, remarkable and blessed with the ability to mesmerize crowds.