The singing doctor

20 Mar 2019 / 10:18 H.

KLANG girl Meroshana Thaiyalan, 26, hails from a small close-knit family. As she puts it: “Family is number one to me and nothing comes above it.”

Her father is a businessman and her mum is a retired teacher, while her younger sister is currently in university.

This talented young lady is not only an award-winning singer (she won the SKOWT-VIMA Best New Act for her song Hearts Of Steel), but is also a medical doctor and an Indian classical music teacher.

Meroshana has loved singing since she was a child, putting on impromptu concerts for family and guests. When she was 15 years old, she participated in Yu Hua Idol, a school-level singing competition, and emerged as first runner-up.

With her newfound confidence, she started posting cover songs on social media, took part in singing shows like MTV Twisties Superstars, and started dabbling in songwriting.

She recently got hitched and she credits her husband – whom she met in college five years ago – for being someone who loves her unconditionally and who understands her career demands.

She describes him as “someone who’s always excited to co-manage my shows and an endless source of encouragement.”

Did you have formal training in singing?

“My formal training was the countless hours of singing in the shower.”

Tell us about your Indian classical music background.

“I started learning veenai (traditional Indian stringed instrument) under Shri Lalithalaya, with my coach Prakash Nambiar about 12 years ago.

“He was the best teacher anyone could ask for, and the veenai is such a beautiful instrument, that I knew I would have a lifelong bond with it.

“I graduated with a distinction in both my junior and teaching exams, performed in many cultural shows with Shri Lalithalaya, and joined in teaching veenai with Master Prakash, before I moved to Malacca for my housemanship.

“[When I return to] Kajang, I plan to continue teaching veenai again.

Did you want to be a doctor who sings, or a singer who treats people?

“I am a doctor who wants to, one day, treat people with my singing and my music. I never want to separate both.

“I am a doctor, and a singer, and in both ways I’m able to treat those who are in need of it. Music heals, and I can’t wait to implement that into patient care and medicine someday soon.”

Music and medicine demand 100% commitment. How do you balance things out?

“I won’t lie, sometimes it does get tough to balance the best of both worlds. Being a doctor can be really demanding both physically and mentally, and sometimes it can be tiring to focus on two things at once.

“But at the end of the day, I’m reminded of how much I love both music and medicine, and subconsciously it all falls into place. I wish I could give better advice on balancing careers, but I’m human and still learning too.”

How did you feel when you were bestowed the VIMA award for Best Newcomer?

“I was ecstatic! Never in a million years did I think I would make it up there, among all the big names!

“I’ve always struggled with my self confidence and insecurities, and winning the VIMA award really gave me the boost I’ve always needed in the music industry.

“I’m so happy my first single, Heart of Steel managed to get the recognition it did, because I truly wanted it to reach to more people, as I wrote it with the intention to spread self love and awareness.”

As a young person, what advice would you give another person on career choices?

“Choose what you love. Choose what you see yourself doing 100 years from today. Choose a career that makes you happy, and work from there.

“From then on, never stop working and striving, and build yourself an empire! The sky’s the limit and it’s not wrong to dream as many dreams as you want.

“People will always have things to say, they will always try to choose for you. There will be countless people trying to knock you off your pedestal, but never stop fighting for what you love –in this case, your career.

“I believe if you choose a career that you love and it makes you happy, you’re set for life. It all depends on what your life goal is. My life goal is to be happy. What’s yours?”

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