Flautist A.V. Prakash (74) died in Mysore on Thursday evening while his concert was in progress along with violinist H.K. Narasimha Murthy.
Confirming that he died of a massive heart attack while he was performing at the Vidya Bharati Prarthana Mandira on the Chandramouleeshwara Temple premises, A.P. Krishna Prasad, flautist and son of Mr. Prakash, said, “My father often said he would like to die while performing on the flute. His words turned out to be true.”
Just few minutes into the concert Prakash collapsed after feeling uncomfortable. “After a few rounds of swara-prasthara, he pleaded with violinist H.K. Narasimha Murthy to continue as he had started sweating profusely. But everything was over by the time we took him to a private hospital,” said K.S.N. Prasad, Secretary, Nada Brahma Gana Sabha and Trustee of Chandramouleeshwara Temple.
Born at Anekere in Hassan district, Prakash, student of flautist N. Ramani, was a popular teacher at Mysore’s Tyagaraja Sangeetha Sabha Trust and Guruguha Venugana Sabha Trust. Known for his acumen in taking across the popular Ramani techniques and approaches in flute, he had trained more than 1,000 students, including T.R. Srinath, V.K. Raman, sons A.P. Krishna Prasad and A.P. Srinivas, the popular duo Hemantha & Heramba, Smita Kiran, H.S. Venugopal, and K.S. Jayaram.
“Most of the flautists in the Carnatic world would say at some point of time they have learnt under A.V. Prakash; such was the quality of his classes and his grammar of teaching,” H.K. Narasimha Murthy said.
“Ramani always admired his passion to collect flutes. He could supply evenly-held shruti flutes to group presentations. His students across the globe will miss him,” said flautist Chandan Kumar.
Prakash had travelled extensively for his concerts, and was recognised and awarded by the State and Central governments for his contributions.