Famous Conductors from India

List of notable or famous conductors from India, with bios and photos, including the top conductors born in India and even some popular conductors who immigrated to India. If you're trying to find out the names of famous Indian conductors then this list is the perfect resource for you. These conductors are among the most prominent in their field, and information about each well-known conductor from India is included when available.

A factual list, featuring people like A. R. Rahman and Ilaiyaraaja.

This historic conductors from India list can help answer the questions "Who are some Indian conductors of note?" and "Who are the most famous conductors from India?" These prominent conductors of India may or may not be currently alive, but what they all have in common is that they're all respected Indian conductors.

Use this list of renowned Indian conductors to discover some new conductors that you aren't familiar with. Don't forget to share this list by clicking one of the social media icons at the top or bottom of the page. {#nodes}

  • A. R. Rahman
    Photo: Ben Gabbe / Getty Images
    Allahrakka Rahman pronunciation ; born A. S. Dileep Kumar) known professionally as A. R. Rahman, is an Indian music director, singer and music producer. His works are noted for integrating Indian classical music with electronic music, world music and traditional orchestral arrangements. Among his awards are six National Film Awards, two Academy Awards, two Grammy Awards, a BAFTA Award, a Golden Globe Award, fifteen Filmfare Awards and seventeen Filmfare Awards South. He has been awarded the Padma Bhushan, the third highest civilian award, in 2010 by the Government of India. In 2009, Rahman was included on the Time 100 list of the world's most influential people. The UK-based world-music magazine Songlines named him one of "Tomorrow's World Music Icons" in August 2011.He is nicknamed "Isai Puyal"(English: the Musical Storm) and "Mozart of Madras". With an in-house studio (Panchathan Record Inn in Chennai), Rahman's film-scoring career began during the early 1990s with the Tamil film Roja. Working in India's film industries, international cinema, and theatre, Rahman is one of the best-selling recording artists, with an estimated 200 million units sold worldwide. Rahman has also become a notable humanitarian and philanthropist, donating and raising money for a number of causes and charities. In 2017, Rahman made his debut as a director and writer for the film Le Musk.
    • Age: 56
    • Birthplace: Chennai, India
  • Ilaiyaraaja (born Gnanathesikan; 2 June 1943) is an Indian film composer, singer, songwriter, instrumentalist, orchestrator, conductor-arranger and lyricist who works in the Indian Film Industry, predominantly in Tamil. Widely regarded as one of the greatest Indian music composers, he is credited for introducing western musical sensibilities in the Indian musical mainstream. Reputed to be the world's most prolific composer, he has composed over 7000 songs, provided film scores for more than 1000 movies and performed in more than 20,000 concerts. Being the first Asian to compose a full symphony with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra in London, Ilaiyaraaja is known to have written the entire symphony in less than a month. He is also a gold medalist in classical guitar from Trinity College of Music, London, Distance Learning Channel. In a poll conducted by CNN-IBN celebrating 100 years of Indian cinema in 2013, Ilaiyaraaja was voted as the all-time greatest film-music director of India. US-based world cinema portal "Taste of Cinema" placed Ilaiyaraaja at the 9th position in its list of 25 greatest film composers in the history of cinema and he is the only Indian composer in that list.Ilaiyaraaja is known for integrating Indian folk music and traditional Indian instrumentation with western classical music techniques. His scores are often performed by the Budapest Symphony Orchestra. He is a recipient of five Indian National Film Awards – three for Best Music Direction and two for Best Background Score. 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 2012, he received the Sangeet Natak Akademi Award, the highest Indian recognition given to practising artists, for his creative and experimental works in the music field.In 2003, according to an international poll conducted by BBC, more than half-a million people from 165 countries voted his composition Rakkamma Kaiya Thattu from the 1991 film Thalapathi as the fourth in the world's top 10 most popular songs of all time. According to Achille Forler, board member of the Indian Performing Right Society, the kind of stellar body of work that Ilaiyaraaja has created in the last 40 years should have placed him among the world's Top 10 richest composers, somewhere between Andrew Lloyd Webber ($1.2 billion) and Mick Jagger (over $300 million).Ilaiyaraaja is nicknamed Isaignani (The musical genius in English) and often referred as Maestro, the prestigious title conferred by the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, London. The critically acclaimed Thiruvasagam (2006) is the first Indian oratorio composed by Ilaiyaraaja. Winner of numerous accolades, one of his compositions was part of the playlist for the opening ceremony of the 2012 London Olympics, directed by acclaimed Oscar-winning filmmaker Danny Boyle of Slumdog Millionaire fame.
    • Age: 80
    • Birthplace: Pannaipuram, Theni, India
  • Pandit Dr. Lakshminarayana Subramaniam (born 23 July 1947) is an acclaimed Indian violinist, composer and conductor, trained in the classical Carnatic music tradition and Western classical music, and renowned for his virtuoso playing techniques and compositions in orchestral fusion.
    • Age: 76
    • Birthplace: Chennai, India
  • Laxmikant Shantaram Kudalkar was a film score composer, orchestrator, music director and conductor.
    • Age: Dec. at 60 (1937-1998)
    • Birthplace: India, Mumbai
  • Mehli Mehta
    Photo: user uploaded image
    Mehli Mehta (25 September 1908 – 19 October 2002) was an Indian conductor and violinist.
    • Age: Dec. at 94 (1908-2002)
    • Birthplace: Mumbai, India
  • Pyarelal Ramprasad Sharma is a film score composer and music director.
    • Age: 83
    • Birthplace: Mumbai, India