The Male Voice Ensemble

The Genesis of the Male Voice Ensemble was in the year 1955/1956 when Madras had many excellent choirs mainly singing in churches. Feeling the need for some good gospel music that was available in the traditional black style of singing, Dr. Thomas Gnanamuthu formed "The Vepery Male Voice Choir". The music rendered was very much appreciated since it was very different from the classical music that was doing its rounds.

It was in September of 1974 that the group became much smaller almost a dozen to make the sound more effective under the able leadership of Dr.Kalyan Subramanyam a very talented musician with an uncanny sense of harmony to arrange music so electrifying that enthralled the audiences. The group named themselves the "The Male Voice Ensemble".

When Dr. Kalyan left to take up an assignment in Bahrain in 1992, the baton came into the hands of Kalyan Subramanyam (jr) who like his uncle is a very gifted musician, adapting the Ensemble to do music with modern settings of chords and harmony that the present generation is listening to.

The strength of the Ensemble is first and foremost a strong sense of belonging in friendship with one another and the ability to experience the finer aspects of the joy of singing together. The blend of spiritual and secular music has been made effective through the style of Harmony that is unique and exclusive to the Ensemble. One of the memorable comments about the group that was made by a hard-line music critic after a performance... "They were the only group with soul in their singing"

The Ensemble has performed all over India to packed audiences and in October 2006 was invited to perform in Northern Ireland as part of the Music Festival. The Ensemble had captivated the residents of Ireland with their breathtaking harmony and syncopations that were evident in many a arrangements that they presented.

The singers range from the very deep voice of Dr. Samuel Grubb, whom Mahelia Jackson described as a 'bottomless bass' to the leader of the group Kalyan Subramanyam (jr) who sings high 1st tenor, thereby enabling the Ensemble to describe 4 octaves on the piano which in itself a rare pehonmenon .The group is gifted with singers like Dr.Ravi Santosham specializing in singing country and western songs and James Davids (Tony) in singing popular black Gospel American music. The Ensemble with its other members, Paul Augustine, Billy John Robertson, Sam Paul and Ebenezer Arun Kumar have been blessed with a natural blending of voices that completes the vocal brilliance of the group .The Ensemble renders music from spirituals, classic to jazz and pop with many fun songs thus highlighting their versatility and making all their performances entertaining and enjoyable.
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