Udupi, Mar 22, 2015 : Gagan G Gaonkar, just 13 years, became the first from this region to win the coveted crown of Sa Re Ga Ma Pa Li’l Champs on Zee TV. He was declared winner at the grand finale of the show that was telecast on Zee TV March 21 night. The people of Udupi, and the entire Karnataka were wide eyed.
Gagan, from Karkala, drew the entire nations admiration, his unique style of singing all through the season has wowed all music lovers. The youngster rendered hit numbers winning mountains of appreciation from Hindi film and music industry heroes like Alka Yagnik, who was one of the judges, Sonu Nigam, and the legendary Asha Bhosle who was a guest judge in an episode. An overjoyed glittering Gagan and his happy parents were in Udupi on March 21 Saturday and Gagan was showered with a warm welcome, just as the results were confirmed. Gagan expressed his sentiments very fittingly to media present saying that in the Zee TV stage learning process he was specially blessed to encounter many leading personalities which serve to inspire him for the future. He touchingly thanked his parents and elders for their support all along.
He also stated that he was very happy that he hails from from Udupi. The people of Udupi supported admirably. When he won the Zee Kannada contest too he had a lot of support from Udupi. He expressed that he is sure that Udupi was one of the reasons he won such a popular contest, people voted in large numbers for him and he was very grateful to all. Gagan, accompanied by his parents Dr Gopalakrishna and Girija Gaonkar, were on hand with him at the grand finale.
Gagan’s father is a professor in economics and his mother is a lecturer. He sings ghazal, Sufi and Hindustani classical songs, and has even acted in the Kannada movie ’Noorondu Bagilu’. Gagan is a student of Little Rock Indian School, Brahmavar. Apart from the L’il Champs trophy, the talented boy, who struck a chord with his melodious voice, also took home a Nissan Sunny car. Elated by the victory, Gagan dedicated his award to his parents and audience. Gagan competed against such popular talents as Keshav Tyohar, Ridham Kalyan, Aishwarya Saha and Arunita Kanjilal. Keshav and Aishwarya were the first and the second runner-up respectively. Gagan rendered songs like "Main toh superman", "Khali peeli rokne ka nahi" and "Jumme ki raat", which made the audience take to the floor impromptu. Gagan was being trained during the last seven years. He mentioned only that his elders and teachers, school and pals gave a lot of encouragement to perform and do his lessons well too, but will now have to work on his studies. His plans are well in place now he said. Audio engineering is in his sights and music composing too, apart from leading roles in the music industry.