From Tiruvaiyaru temple we proceeded to Thiagaraja Memorial also in Tiruvaiyaru. Tiruvaiyaru is the birth place of Thyagaraja. Saint Thyagaraja was an extraordinary Carnatic Music composer and ardent devotee of Sri Rama. He is known as one of the Trinity of Carnatic Music the other two being Muthuswami Dikshitar & Syama Sastri. He composed several Kritis in various raghas. For Thiagaraja's biography log on to : http://www.bharatadesam.com/people/biographies/poets_composers/tyagaraja.php
The Thiagaraja Aradhanai is held annually during January. During the festival, Pancharatna kritis of Saint Thiagaraja are sung by the musicians and the audience enthusiastically partake along with the musicians in rendering the kritis. Carnatic music finds prominence during the festival. It is believed that young musicians will be blessed with a melodious voice if they sing Thyagaraja's songs at his memorial.
We were extremely fortunate that at the time of our unplanned & unscheduled visit that day a small group of prominent musicians had gathered to sing Pancharatna Kriti on the occasion of Sivaratri led by P.S.Narayanaswamy, O.S.Arun and others along with a group of violinists & mridangists. After offerring worship to Saint Thyagaraja the performance began and we understand the program to go on through the day & the whole night. We stayed for a short while and left. For some delectable pictures taken on this occasion log onto : http://picasaweb.google.com/ramakrishnan49/ThiagarajaMemorial
Our next visit was to Chandrabhagavan Temple, Thingalur on the way from Thiruvaiyaru to Kumbakonam. around 25 Kms away from Thanjavur.
As chandran (moon) was very much handsome and legible, Daksha Prajapathi gave all his 27 daughters (Stars) in marriage to him. Instead of treating all of them alike, he neglected 26 wives and spent most of his time with the 27th wife Rohini . Daksha Prajapathi advised Chandran to treat all his 27 wives equally. But Chandran ignored him. Daksha Prajapathi got offended and cursed Chandran that he should suffer from a wasting disease. Chandran prayed to Lord Siva in Thingalur to save him from the curse. Saving him God ordered that Chandran should remain in the temple in Thingalur and should give relief to those, suffering from the ill effects of Chandran’s adverse placement in their horoscopes and offering prayers to him. So, such people who are affected by the adverse positions of Chandran in their horoscopes offer prayers to Lord Kailasanathar, Goddess Sri Periyanayaki and Chandra Bagavan (moon God), by offering prayers.