Maestro Ilaiyaraaja

Maestro Ilaiyaraaja at OVO Arena Wembley in Wembley Park.

Shri. Ilaiyaraaja, born June 2nd, 1943, is an Indian Film Composer, Conductor, Arranger, Lyricist and Singer who works in the Indian Film Industry. Widely regarded as one of the greatest Indian music composers, he is often credited for introducing western musical sensibilities in the Indian film musical mainstream, predominantly in the South. He has composed over 8,500 Songs, besides being the only composer in the world to have composed music for 1,418 Feature Films in over 9 languages. Shri. Ilaiyaraaja is the only composer in the world to have written lyrics for over 1,500 songs besides singing over 1,000 songs himself. In 2003, according to an international poll conducted by BBC with participation from 165 countries, his composition "Rakkamma Kaiya Thattu" from the 1991 film Thalapathi was voted  fourth in the Top 10 Most Popular Songs of All Time.

Dr. Ilaiyaraaja, nicknamed "isaignani" (Musical Genius) is also often referred to as "Maestro", amongst others by the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, London, has performed over 20,000 concerts in his career spanning 5 decades.

He is known for integrating Indian Folk Music and traditional Indian instrumentation with western classical music techniques. In 1986, he was the first Indian composer to record film songs through computer for a Tamil film titled Vikram starring Shri. Kamal Haasan. He was one of the earliest Indian film composers to use western classical music harmonies and string arrangements in film music and the first South Asian to compose a full symphony. He also composed Thiruvasagam in Symphony in 2006 which is the first Indian Oratorio.

Dr. Ilaiyaraaja is a recipient of five national awards — three for Best Music Direction and two for Best Background Score. In 2012, he received the Sangeet Natak Akademi Award the highest Indian recognition given to practising artists, for creative and experimental works in the music field. In 2010, he was awarded the Padma Bhushan, the third-highest civilian honour in India and the Padma Vibhushan in 2018, the second-highest civilian award by the Government of India.

In a 2013 poll conducted by CNN celebrating 100 Years of Indian Cinema, Shri. Ilaiyaraaja was voted as the All-time Greatest Film-Music Director of India. In 2014, American World Cinema portal "Taste of Cinema" placed him at the 9th position in its list of 25 Greatest Film Composers in the History of Cinema amongst Ennio Morricone, John Williams, Jerry Goldsmith and Hans Zimmer.

OVO Arena Wembley in Wembley Park

You know you’re in London’s most iconic live music venue when the echoes of “Hello Wembley!” are ringing through your ears. OVO Arena Wembley has been a destination for music and live entertainment for over 80 years and it’s not slowing down. With over 100 events every year and over one million visitors each year passing through its legendary doors, OVO Arena Wembley (formerly known as The SSE Arena, Wembley) has something for everyone, from the most in-demand gigs from a hot new artist to classic once-in-a-lifetime performances from your favourite band.