Leela Omchery

Leela Omchery
Born 1929
Thiruvattar, Kanyakumari, India
Occupation Singer, musicologist, writer
Spouse(s) Omchery N. N. Pillai
Awards Padmashri
Kendra Sangeet Natak Academy Award
Marunaadan Malayaali Award
Fellow – Kerala Sangeetha Nataka Akademi
Sangeeta Kulapathi
Sangeet Kovida
Sangeeta Sarva Bhouma
Website http://leelaomchery.org

Leela Omchery is a classical singer, musicologist and writer. She is known for her contributions to classical music and is a recipient of Padmashri award from Government of India for her contributions to Indian classical dance and music.[1]

Life Sketch

Leela Omchery was born in 1928 in Mankoyikkal tharavdu in Thiruvattar in Kanyakumari district in Tamil Nadu. She started learning music from an early age under Karnatic music guru, Thiruvattar Arumugham Pillai Bhagavathar, along with her younger brother, late Kamukara Purushothaman, a known classical and playback singer in Malayalam.[2] Hailing from a family of musicians, she had the opportunity to hone her music talents under the guidance of her grand mother and mother who were musicians in their own rights.

After early schooling in Kanyakumari, she obtained graduate degree in Carnatic music from Women's college, Thiruvananthapuram and continued her studies in Hindustani music at Punjab University and obtained another graduate degree. Her Master's degree came from Meerut University and she got her PhD in music from Delhi University.[3]

She is married to famous writer Omchery N. N. Pillai and resides in New Delhi. The couple has two children, S.D. Omchery and Deepti Omchery Bhalla, a renowned classical dancer.

She has also written some short stories.


Leela Omchery is presently working as a Professor in Kamukara School of Music, Dance and Research Studies, Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala and as Professor and Principal of Trikalaa Gurukulam in Delhi.[4]

She is the President of Dakshina Bharati (a south Indian Women’s Organization) and Vice President of Swaralaya, Delhi.

She is an accredited Supervisor and Guide to Ph.D and M.Phil from various universities including Delhi, Kerala, Calicut, Baroda, Nalanda, and Bombay. She is also a member of the Selection Board of AIR, Doordarshan, ICCR, IGNCA, SNA (Delhi), Ministry of Culture and IGNOU.

She has also worked as the Associate Professor and Head, Karnatak Music Section, Faculty of Music & Fine Arts, University of Delhi (1964–1994). She also served as Editorial Staff of Indian Music Journal, Vageeshwari, (1975–1994).



Indian Music and Allied Arts (5 volumes)Sandeep Prakashan, Delhi1990
Gleanings in Indian MusicSandeep Prakashan, Delhi1991
Immortals of Indian MusicGyan Books, Delhi1998


Abhinaya SangeethamBhasha Institute, Kerala1981
Paadavum PadhavumD.C. Books, Kerala
Keralathile Laasya RachanakalD.C. Books, Kerala2003
Chinakkara Koothu PaattukalMudra Books, Delhi2008
Leela Omcheriyude PathangalPoorna Books, Kerala2009
Karuna Cheyvanenthu Thamsam KrishnaD.C. Books, Kerala2011
Vettam Mangiya Kovil PaattukalPoorna Books, Kerala

On Other Topics

  • Leelanjali (Short stories)
  • Jeevitham (Drama)
  • Parthivan Kanavu – Translation from Tamil
  • Katha Bharathi – Translation from Tamil
  • Aaharavum Aarogyavum

She is also credited with over 200 published articles.

Awards and recognitions

  • Padmashri by Government of India in 2009
  • Kendra Sangeet Natak Academy Award for the contribution to Traditional Music (Sopaana Sangeetham) and popular music of Kerala in 2003
  • Marunaadan Malayaali Award for Excellence in the field of Traditional music and Arts, Delhi in 2008
  • Fellow – Kerala Sangeetha Nataka Akademi in 1991
  • Sangeeta Kulapathi from Kalaadarppanam, Kerala in 2003
  • Sangeet Kovida from Gayatri Fine Arts, Delhi in 2003
  • Kalaacharya from Akhila Kerala Maaraar Mahaa Sabha, Kerala in 1990
  • Sangeeta Sarva Bhouma from Astika Samaj, Delhi in 2006
  • Award for overall contributions to Music and Culture, Panchavaadya Trust, Delhi in 2006
  • Senior Fellowships/Associate ship for Research Projects from various prestigious national organizations like Indian Council of Historical Research (ICHR), University Grants Commission (UGC), Indira Gandhi National Centre for Arts and Culture (IGNCA), SNA (Delhi).


  1. "Padma Awards" (PDF). Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India. 2015. Archived from the original (PDF) on 15 November 2014. Retrieved July 21, 2015.
  2. http://www.indiaclub.com/shop/AuthorSelect.asp?Author=Leela+Omchery
  3. http://leelaomchery.org/academic-record
  4. http://leelaomchery.org/career

Further reading

  • Leela Omchery / Deepti Omchery Bhalla (1991). Gleanings of Indian Music and Art. MLBD. ISBN 8185067775. 
  • Leela Omchery (1990). Studies in Indian Music and Allied Arts (5 Vols.). MLBD. ISBN 8185067600. 
  • Leela Omchery / Deepti Omchery Bhalla (2012). Karuna Cheyvanenthu Thamsam Krishna. DC Books. ISBN 9788124019221. 
This article is issued from Wikipedia. The text is licensed under Creative Commons - Attribution - Sharealike. Additional terms may apply for the media files.