Saturday, 9 March 2013

Sruti Magazine: A Concert in Indraloka

Sruti Magazine: A Concert in Indraloka: Sruti fiction By V Shankaranarayanan Date: 10-Aug-2024 Place: NASA Headquarters, Washington DC Project: Historic Manned Mission to Mar...

2013 Mar 08 TMKrishna RKShriramKumar PraveenKumar NGuruPrasad @ kalOtsav, oDukattur muTT, Bangalore

I want to narrate the story of 3s ..... credits to Vid TMK for the creative concert that he presented at Odukattur mutt.

Vid. T. M. Krishna - Vocal
Vid. R. K. Shriram Kumar - Violin
Vid. Praveen Kumar - Mridanga
Vid. N Guru Prassad - Ghatam ( left handed player - if you have not observed it till now  !)

A quick review can be summarised as a tale of trinity and 3s as it contained

3 AlApana, 3 composers, 3 krithis , 3 neravals , 2 swaras , 3 tanis.

A brief list is here.. A detailed review follows later

01 dEvi Sri tuLasamma - mAyAmALavaGauLa - Adi - thyAgarAja
02 AnandEswarENa - AnandaBhairavi - m.cApu - m.dhIkshitar
03 dEvi nI Pada Sarasamule - kAmbhOji - shyAmA shAstri

2.5 hrs already spent on the 3 tracks above...

04 dayamADo ranga - KalyANi  purandara dAsa
05 Viruttam (thandhai tAyum nI) - Ragamalika (mOhana, varAli, kIravANi) 
06 tatva jIva - kIravANi - sadAshiva brahmEndra
07 mangaLam kOsalEndrAya - kIravANi

Was there pretty much ontime to get a good seat to listen / watch / witness the "krishnOvashion". Also with a friend of mine dared to walk into the green room to place a request.

As the evening unfolded I was pretty optimistic that he could fit our requests anywhere in the concert considering the recent trends.

Did not expect the initial alapana to extend to 21 minutes. The audience were patient to wait for the song. None of our group guess worked as he started off with dEvi Sri tuLasamma...with a detailed vilamba kala presentation that extended to neraval that in total lasted 28 minutes and handed over to the percussionists to take over. The first surprise for the evening was unveiled.

The brief tani that lasted 13 minutes was interspersed with intricate beat techniques ( that is what a layman to percussion can explain) that upheld the traditions of Palani School. It also hinted a possible pallavi that may come in.

Statistically speaking, this may be the first tani in the history of carnatic music where the count of audience before the start and after the end of tani was same !!

Then came the presentation of my favourite Anandabhairavi in dIkshitar samradAya. It was distinctly different and Vid. RKSK response was equally edurite.

panchalinga krithi on the thiruvArUr diety  AnandEshvarENa samrakSitOham by m.dhIkshitar was well presented in viLamba kAala with nereval and swaras. The swara patterns were distinct too. Once again the song ended with a brief tani that lasted for 6 minutes.

As he had tried Adi, chapu and both were not pratimadhyama, we started our permutations to predict the manOdharma of the artist, but failed once again.

RKSK took over the rAga AlApana of kAmbOdhi and was reciporocated by TMK with a very sedate ( read as : non aggressive) vocal tAna ! It was indeed a grand affair that lasted 31 minutes.

Then came in another grand presentation of dEvi ni pAda sarasamule in kAmbOdhi a composition of shyAmA sAstri. 

My friend also commented that

"Time for some hyperbole!

Matthew Hayden said "I have seen God; he bats at number 4 in tests for India!"

Well... I just heard God... singing a sublime Tanam in Kambhoji!"

He followed the violinist in presenting the swaras and the exchange and comradrie on stage was extremely evident. He had by then treated the audience with one of his greatest performance with some of the rare krithis of trinity.

Already a vilamba kAla concert... further drifted into daya mADO ranga, and a rAgamAlika viruttum.

The tatva jIvatwam in kIravani brought a sublime, edurite concert to an end. 

One cannot ask for more and we returned happier (than what we would have been had he honoured our requests) considering that our requests were not the right catalysts for his experimental plans for the evening.

Thursday, 7 March 2013

2013 Mar 05 NRavikiran Akkarai SubhAlakshmi BCManjunath NAmrith Giridhar Udupa @ vINeya beDagu

01 Introduction to varNa sAmi ninnE nammiyunnAnura nAmida pUrvikalyANi varNa khaNDa maTya vINA sEshaNNa
02 dhEnuka AlApane followed by rAmAbhi rAma nivugAka brOcheva dhEnuka rUpaka vINA sEshaNNa
03 dwijAvanti AlApane followed by prasanna gOpAla dwijAvanti misra aTa 2 kaLai OVK
04 marugElarA O rAghavA jayanthashrI Adi thyAgarAja
05 rAga tAna vAchaspati followed by a detailed Emani delupudura gOpAla i mahilo ne vAchaspati Adi 2 kaLai vINA seshaNNa and
06 tillAna kAnaDa vINA sEshaNNa
07 nI nAma rUpamulaku mangaLa sourAshtra Adhi thyAgarAja

Attended a concert of Chitraveena N Ravikiran (supported by his student Vishal Sapuram) and the young brigade oc carnatic music at Bangalore Gayana Samaja.. 

Need I say more. a 200% bliss concert . Am in a trance now unable to write anything. Will write a review when I'm out of it..

Now that Im out of it... here are few words about the concert..

Ravikiran began the cocnert with a maTya tALa varNa composed by vINA sEshaNNa. The composition exploits the glory of pUrvikalyani in full form in a small span of varNa. Even though it was presented as composed, Ravikiran elaborated the structure and nuances of the composition with a 3 minute interaction.

A very small dhEnuka AlApane lead into the rAmAbhi rAma composition, once again a composition of vInA sEshaNNa.

A quick dwijAvanthi AlApane and he presented his favourite composer's composition on Krishna @ pandrApur.

Another injustice in as many days on MarugElara.. which was a filler. Irrespective of whether its a filler / a good long  presentation, marugElara evokes a good resonance in me.

Spacious alapane of vAchaspati and the keerthane Emani delpudura once again y vINA sEshaNNa with evocative nerval and lively swara and other musical embellishments. Scintillating with good violin accompaniment Akkarai SubhAlakshmi, Manjunath BC on mridanga and N Amruth and Giridhar Udupa enhanced the concert with their top class performance. Different laya patterns of the rAga came to the fore as music kept gushing forth.

3 Percussions paired up very well to produce an excellent tani.

The stage was set now to pace down the concert with a lilting kAnaDa tillAna followed by mangaLa.

For those who attended the concert, regaled in the cracker of a concert !! Others just missed being in bliss for 2 hrs.

Blast from the Past: Young Performer Review by Yessel

Published by YESSEL on Dec 2010 on Sangeethapriya Group

Dear sangIthaprEmis,
Sorry for the delayed post. Got held up with some official work(have to do occasionally!!).

Ok tracking back the concert of Ramakrishnamurthy's concert heard on Dec 21,10, let me call him RK. I know most of you would condemn me for the abbreviation, as RK refers to the legendary Ramnad Krishnan. Yes I intentionally call Ramakrishnamurthy as RK, reason being I wish he evolves as the newgen RK. Believe me RK shows a lot of promise.

For a youngster raised in California State USA what is expected doesn't show up and what showed up was not expected, atleast by me. He has had training in Carnatic music from many good teachers and now is under the guidance of Chingleput Sri. Ranganathan. I know you will wondering why I've mentioned training instead of learning. I strongly believe that RK has music genetically coded in him. I wish to stand by this statement. So RK would have been guided by his teachers like what Tiger Varadhachariar was supposed to had done to his disciples. RK has an immense crave for aesthetics.

Though he was incapacitated due to a bad throat, he never showed signs of compromise. Infact I had marked in my notepad a sruthi misalignment in the kEdAra classic rAmA nEpai which he sang as the 1st song of the concert. But then I realised his natural constrain. He could have canceled the concert if the situation was bad. But he spared us. He then ventured into a short crisp delineation of Anandha bhairavi, and started the Syama Sastri crafted Rolls Royce himAchala tanayubrO. My all time favourite rendition of this kriti is by Dr. S. Ramanathan and usually lend a deaf ear to other artistes. But RK slowly creeped inside my ear and settled in my thoughts. Here he showed signs of a fine amalgam of his training under Chingleput with his native grip over layam. The tempo is a very critical component in this genre of kritis, yes they are a separate genre.

What took me by surprise is the next song of the evening - emperor of the genre soundararAjam in brindavana sAranga. This kriti is on the lord of the temple at the shore town Nagapattinam in Tamilnadu. There are a lot of legends associated to this town in all the ramayana perspectives. I had been to this town and like Muthuswami Dikshithar have ogled at the temple structure. But unfortunately am not adept in any of his skills and talent to compose a kriti of this grandeur. But this town and the temple will inspire to sing. Visualise this kriti, you can see the waves gently caress the shore and roll back. My friend (yes the same person who was beside me during SS's concert) who knows my weakness for this kriti looked at me sitting 2 rows before and mimed to the effect 'unfair'. He did this because he knows that this one kriti if rendered well or to my satisfaction will get the artiste above 75% from me. I've DKP, TNS, TMT, SKR's version of this kriti. I have listed only those I like. Don't worry am not going to say that RK rendered it like one of them or better. Honestly RK's perfect layam accorded the kriti with perfect respect. I always have a strong conviction that rendering this kriti is no mean task. Particularly youngsters attempting this kriti should be encouraged provided they adhere to the pAdAntharam(the way in which it was taught). Why I say this? Its because rendering this kriti involves a phenomenal understanding of the composer, the mood he would have been while composing (its sort of evident in most of Dikshithar's kritis) and more importantly a perfect sustained tempo. RK did everything gracefully.

He sang a truly brilliant thOdi ragam. He sang dAsu kOvalEna. No adjectives for the kriti he rendered. You know why, just saying its a Thyagaraja kriti in thOdi suffices. No other composer has handled this rAga like Thyagaraja. My opinion if Thyaragaja has not composed in thOdi singers would have not attempted it at all. Musicologist in our group please throw some light on this. RK's neraval in this kriti should be mentioned specially here. I've mentioned many times about his layam. So am not saying about that but I've to mention something to justify my remark at the beginning - aesthetics. What to me is aesthetic singing? always having his/her weakness at the back of the mind and rendering with a sense of proportion. RK did exactly what I expected. His neraval was elaborate but not draggy. His swara singing was not just arithmetic combination of notes but very musical. So the bottom line is listen to RK on 27-Dec-2010-1:30:00 PM at The Mylapore Fine Arts Club.

Hold on I promised not to write about the accompanists as they are elders. M A Krishnaswamy made me break my vow. I've seen him being very lackadaisical at times but not accepted when accompanying juniors. Seniors should live up to the responsibility. Expected to hand hold but in the contrary MAK just went haywire, played just the scale not the thOdi rAga. I expected a better brindavana sAranga from the Parur cub. A very disappointing performance by MAK.

Tuesday, 5 March 2013

2013 March 04 RamakrishnanMurthy CharulataRamanujam SrimushanamVRajaRao RanganathaChakravarthy

Ramakrishnan Murthy returned to back to Bangalore in a span of 3 days to present a detailed concert for kalOtsav festival @ oDukattur mutt.

Accompanied by stalwarts, I was in for a treat of complete concert as this sabha is known to start on time and offer a complete 3 hour slot for the artist to present his vidwat. Vid Ramakrishnan Murthy, in my view, made the best use of the opportunity. and I don't think I was disappointed at the end.

Here is a list of the songs presented in the evening.

01 inta cAlamu jEsitE VARNA bEgaDA Adi vINai kuppiyer
02 chadram bhaja mAnasa asAvEri chaturashra maTTya M.dIkshitar
03 brOchEvA revarE raghupathE shrIranjani Adhi thyAgarAja
04 dhanyAsi AlApane followed by kanulAra kaNTi dhanyAsi rUpaka walajApet venkataramaNa bhagavathar
05 vazhi maraiththu nAtakuranji chApu gOpAlakriShNa bhArathi
06 marugElarA O rAghavA jayanthashrI Adi thyAgarAja
07 shaNkarAbharaNa AlApane followed by enduku peddalavale buddhi shankarAbharaNam Adi tyAgarAja and tani
08 EdayyA gati calanATa Adi koTESwara Iyer
09 iDadu padamtUkki khamAs Adi pApanAsam sivan
10 viruttum kApi
11 jagadOddhArana kApi Adhi Purandara dhAsa
12 dhirana tanadhImta TILLANA cenjuruTi vIna seshaNNa
13 rAmachandrAya janaka mangaLam kuranji bhadrAcala rAmadas

The appetiser was presented in form of bEgaDa varna and a navagraha krithi for the day chandram bhaja mAnasa in asAveri. Both built the tempo for the proceedings for the evening

The shriranjani piece picked up the pace with a brisk swara pattern that was presented.

The first AlApana came in the form of dhanyAsi ( my another favourite..). Not so frequently heard kanulAra kanTi presentation demonstrated the vast reportire of the artist.

The sedate filler for vaZhi marai was compensated by marugElara. Wondering when will this compositon get a main stage ?

The ever grand shaNkarAbharNa was presented in much detail to last for around 30 minutes. endku peddala emelisshed with nereval and swaras lasted equally long. The stalwart took over to present a 30 minute tani.

Tail pieces quickly occupied the next 30 minutes, with mridangist dominating the decisions on proceedings. It is still early stages for Vid Ramakrishnan Murthy, but with his talent and dedication, I look forward for days where he is command of the proceedings on the stage.

2013 March 01 Ramakrishnan Murthy CNChandrashekar KUJayachandra Rao NAmrith @ Karnataka Lalita Kala Parishat

01 BhavanutA nA hrida yamuna mOhana Adhi tyAgarAja
02 shEshAchala nAyakam bhajAmi varALi rUpaka m.dhIkshithar
03 nAyaki AlApane followed by ranganAyakam bhAvayE nAyaki Adhi m.dhIkshitar
04 bhOgIndra shAyinam kuntalavarALi jhampa swAthiThirunAL
05 tODi AlApane followed by rAvE himagiri kumAri kanci kAmAkSi tODi Adi syAma sAstri and tani
06 rAma rAma rAma rAma rAma ennirO sItA tilang PurandaraDasa
07 tAnOm tanata dhiranA paras Adhi pUchi srInivAsa IyengAr
08 nI nAma rUpamulaku mangaLa sourAshtra Adhi thyAgarAja

Vid Ramakrishnan Murthy presented the 792nd concert of the sabha at Jayanagar National College  (HN Kalakshetra) .

As there were conflicting information across on the start time of the concert, I tried to be there amongst the earliest notified time ( 6.00 pm). I overheard the sabha secretary indicating that even though they have published the scheduled start time as 6.30, they usuallly start the program at 6.45 !!. I was full 45 minutes early for the program. To add salt to the injury, the concert would end at 8.15 ! It meant a mini meals of 90 minutes concert  

Had to wait patiently until the artists occupied the stage at 6.45. Introductory speech killed another 10 minutes of the concert time.

Without wasting much time, Ramakrishnan Murthy started off with the very popular Bhavanuta in mOhana with s wara embelishments. shEshAchala nAyakam came in as a sedate filler and was presented leisurely.

As he cleared his throat with some hot water, it was an indication of a long haul composition and I was not wrong about it.  An apt presentation of nAyaki and ranganAyakam bhAvayE that followed filled in the sub main slot. I really enjoyed the laya at which it was presented.

bhOgIndra was a brisk filler.

toDi received the deserved treatment as he elaborated the lengths and depths of the rAga. Then came another sedate presentation of grand swarajati rAve himagiri.

A short tani and the concert tapered down with tilAng composition of purandara dAsa, pUchi's paras tillAna and the standard mangala.

Even though the whole affair lasted for about 105 minutes, he made it feel longer with sedate compositions.

This short concert is no indication of the capabilities and asura sAdhana that's been foundation of Vid Ramakrishnan Murthy's abilities.

Violinist has always disappointed me with his presentation and today was no doubt! Percussionist gelled well and presented a perfect rhythm when they accompanied during compositions and vidwat during tani.

I returned home with a thought that this was just a appetizer as i would attend his one more concert on Monday 4th March at odukattur.  Watch out for that review.

I seriously advice the organisers not to dissapoint serious rasikAs by such shabby management of time.

2018 Apr 23 ChitravinaRavikiran LalagudiViji SaiGiridhar GiridharUdupa @ SRSM FHS

ChitravINA : Vid. ChitravinaRavikiran  Violin: Vid. LalagudiViji  Mridanga: Vid. SaiGiridhar  Ghata: Vid. GiridharUdupa Venue/ Occas...