Download: Carnatic Music Theory notes

UPDATE – Oct 5, 2012 : Uploaded Detailed  Syllabus in Telugu.

Music Theory notes for Carnatic Music at Government Music colleges, Andhra Pradesh –


Download: Carnatic Music Theory – Year I (pdf, ~110 KB)

Year II (pdf, ~220 KB)

Beautifully typeset using Latex. Please inform me if there are any typos or other errors.

Detailed Syllabus (in Telugu) – Certificate and Diploma Courses – all Years – (pdf, ~3 MB) *NEW

Note: It’s from a copy of official syllabus, scanned & reformatted, however, I can’t make any promises that this is the current and official syllabus. Shared in public interest.

  • UPDATE – Dec 10, 2010 : Uploaded full Syllabus. It’s a scanned copy of a hand-written notes from a senior. It’s in Comic Book format (CBZ), use some comic book reader software to view, or use a zip (like 7-zip) software to unzip and get individual pages.
  • UPDATE – May 04, 2010 : Uploaded Year I’s Theory.
  • UPDATE – Apr 22, 2010 : Broken link, fixed.
  • UPDATE – Apr 9, 2010 : Corrected some mistakes in Year II. (Vasantha – Avarohanam corrected, Hindolam is Audava ragam, Some notes about Thana and Padha varnams included.)


  • Theory papers for Year 3 and 4 are not ready yet. These are the notes that I took from my teacher for my personal use. I can post Year 3 or 4’s notes only when I move to those classes.  I’ve completed my certificate course. I used a different strategy for my notes for year 3 and 4; I couldn’t share the notes here. I’ll work on and compile notes for all the years.
  • The official textbook prepared by Sri. Akella Mallikarjuna Sharma, which contains Varnams, Kritis etc, for the whole 6  year course, is now available in English too. (Practical part only)

31 thoughts on “Download: Carnatic Music Theory notes”

  1. Thanks a lot for posting such a useful link. Iam appaearing for music exam and was having great difficulty in translation from telugu > english. Do you possibly have other years theory downloads too? If you could share some exam tips for praticals and things to keep in mind it would go a great deal of good.

  2. Hi…Any idea when the third and fourth year theory pdfs could be available? As the exam is approaching it would be a real help to the aspirants of certificate exam.

  3. I am learning Carnatic vocal music in Karnataka.
    I was planning to give my Senior exam in Karnataka when I found out that I need to relocate to Andhra Pradesh.
    I wished to know what are the equivalent music exams in Andhra Pradesh for the corresponding exams of Junior, Senior and Vidwath held in Karnataka?
    Can you please tell me what is the equivalent of the senior exam in Andhra Pradesh?
    Will the syllabus be the same and would it be possible to share the syllabus for the exam?

    1. Potti Sriramulu Telugu University conducts Certificate and Diploma exams. One can join the govt music colleges for these courses or appear for exams directly as a private candidate. Certificate course should be equivalent to Lower and Diploma, Higher.

      The syllabus (in Telugu) for these courses is uploaded here. One can write the theory exams in either Telugu or in English. I’ll upload the English translation of the official syllabus soon here.

      Sorry for the delay in reply. Hope it’s useful.

  4. Hello Ananth

    The information you posted is very useful. Can you please post the theory for 3rd and 4th year, if you have it ready. I am planning to attend the certificate exam in English, so your links are very useful.


    1. Can you please give the contacts of all the exams that are conducted in Music in Hyderabad. This will help all the music lovers. Not just diploma and degree but the various levels conducted by govt in Music

  5. hi,
    I am a veena artist.Iteach students. I was finding it difficult to give them notes for theory.your notes is very convenient to use.can you please post details about appearingfor the exams how to apply when and to whom.
    thank you.madhavi

  6. PLEASE TRY TO UPLOAD A NEW 1ST & 2nd YEAR THEORY IN TELUGU SCRIPT. otherwise, please direct us how to upload your theory notes (we type it in telugu and create pdfs).

    1. Theory in Telugu is easy to get. Telugu University sells complete music theory book according to our syllabus for a very nominal price.

  7. your first and second year theory notes are very useful to me..i cant say any words about your help….thank u very very much and much sir…

      1. Hi Ananth,

        I am interested in the certificate course in Music from Potti Sriramulu Telugu Uni for my daughter who turned 15 years this year. I checked the PDF links for year I and II. Should I refer anything else. Any help would be much appreciated. Thank you Ganga

  8. Hi, I am gathering the material for my 12 1/2 yr old daughter, who will be appearing for Certificate exams in about a year and half. Kindly if you can scan and place it in your blog the 3rd and 4th year theory as well, it will help many many students for all years and exams to come.
    Thanks for sharing 1st and 2nd year notes.

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