Vocal: Vid. RamaksrishnanMurthy
Violin: Vid. LRamakrishnan
Mridanga: Vid. ManojSiva
Ghata: Vid. SukanyaRamgopal
Occasion:: 39th Gokulashtami Celebrations at SGBS Trust / Unnati
01 sadguru gajAsya ...bEgaDe shlOka followed by
nAda tanumanisham chittaranjani Adhi thyAgarAja (S)
Swara @ nAda tanumanisham
02 nIlAyatAkSi nIvE jagatsAkSi paras tiShra tripuTa ShyamaShastri
03 nenaruncinAnu anniTiki nidhAnuDani nEnu nIdu mALavi Adi tyAgarAja (A, CS, S)
swara @ nenarunchi nAnu
04 pankaja lochana kalyAni swAthi thirunAl (A, N, S)
Nereval @ brindAvanAntakrita
05 swAmi mukhya prANA yadukula kAMbOdhi rUpaka p.dAsa
06 shrI rAjagOpAla bAla sAvEri Adhi m.dIkshitar (A, CS, N, S, T)
Nereval @ nArAyaNa tAraka divya
07 rAga tAna pallavi ChaturaSra tripuTa khaNDa naDai eDupu 2 akshara (or one beat) before samam
Pallavi line: AhObilaharim naraharim sadA AshrAye. . mAlOlam murArim
Ragamalika. ..hindOLa. ..AbhOgi. ..atANA. .ranjani. . NAgaswarAvali... Malayamaruta. . bhupAla...mOhana. .nIlAmbari. .kannaDa... Sindhubhairavi .. sAranga. . SurUTi
08 eppo varuvArO jOnpuri Adhi gOpAla krishNa bhArathi
09 viruttum rAgamAlika
Shrutva gunan - Bhagavata - bEhAg
Ai murali - Shikshastaka - darbAri kAnaDa
Kasturi tilakam - Krishnakarnamruta-surUTi
10 jalaja bandhu suraTi chApu swAthi thirunAL followed by mangaLam kOsalEndrAya in surUTi
Earlier this week, while conducting a workshop on quality for the young guns who recently joined my team, I had set them a challenge of ability to compile for the first time (without any second attempt) the code they write. Quite a few of them raised their eye brows that its next to impossible/ inhuman to achieve that level of perfection during coding. I’m 200% sure, if Vid. Ramakrishnan Murthy had taken a vocational career based on his education, he would have delivered the same with ease. On the other hand, I could have asked my new colleagues to attend his concert to see how he delivers it each time he takes the stage and set a new definition of perfection.
I came out of the concert hall with a similar feeling, that I could exemplify this (real life example than referring to hearsay sources) in my next training sessions.
In simplest words, I would say this was THE BEST concert that I have attended till date in this year. He has set new levels of benchmark in each of the 5 concerts that I have attended.
Being an early bird to the hall, on a midweek day of a short work week fetched me a cozy front row seat to witness 2 Ramakrishnan(s) deliver one of the most memorable concert of the season / year. The curtains rolled over on the strike of the 18.00 hrs., we were already treated for a few voice test samples, indicating what was in store for us.
A bEgade shlOka paying Obeisance to guru to grant all energy for the concert, (more on this by RSachi @ http://www.rasikas.org/forums/viewtopic.php?t=27182) paved way for a Chittaranjani composition in praise of Shiva. The flow of swarAs from both Ramakrishnan's was mellifluous. The uninterrupted flow lasted for a greater portion of the presentation making it a leisurely start.
The second presentation was devoted to Shiva's consort of Nagaikaaronam temple, a Shakti pITa of the sapthavitanga sthalams. The blue eyed boy of the day praised the blue eyed mother through the krithi nIlAyatAkshi, as bhakti poured out of the sangatis of the Pallavi. There was no need for embellishments for us to feel the fullness.
Though its customary (ARI School) to have the first detailed AlApane for the third song, mAlavi was a short AlApane that preceded nenarunchara, the Eka rAga krithi of tyAgarAja. The chiTTeswaras and the kalpana swarAs were delivered at ease.
Surprise detailed AlApane came in for kalyANi krithi pankaja lOchana. It turned out to be sub-main of the concert with audience applauding both the cause (vocal) and the effect (violin replies) with equal fervor. The mood set for the krithi was carried through well with apt accompaniments on percussion, with immense control exercised on both decibel and the content.
Though Anandabhairavi as a rAga resonates well with me (I have heard this version by Bellary Raghavendra), the yadukula kAmbOdhi version (tuned by RK ShriramKumar) of swAmi mukhya prANa evoked similar resonance in me. The additional info of kshetra composition was added bonus to swaying audience.
My desire for more sAvEri in the previous concert was satisfied with the team dwelling in soulful sAvEri. Vid. Ramakrishnan Murthy swayed all three octaves with ease and LR following him like a shadow. Vid. L Ramakrishnan being a new comer on CM arena here in Bangalore had already made audience take a note of his virtuosity. Listening to the concert blind folded, one could have mistaken him to any other veteran in the field. The music was so deep that audience forgot to applaud as the hall reverberated in crests and troughs through the ocean of sAvEri. Those 15 minutes were far into the seventh sea of the musical world.
An apt krithi praising the deity of mannArguDi, srI rAjagOpAla, the sAvEri epic by muttuswAmi dIkshitar, also adding another to the list of composers for the day. The neraval was profound, the accompaniments added their luster with their respective illustrious bAni brought out the best combination for the day. Though I have not had fortune of
listening to yester year masters, this just reflected a 21st century combination of their respective gurus enthralling the audience.
Well-paced innumerable cycles of mELkAla neraval and kalpanA swarAs paved way into a gripping Tani. Both Vid. Manoj Siva and Vid. Sukanya Ramgopal brought out their best to add to already decked up sAvEri. Post Tani, the second charana of the song was presented to bring an end to the most divine hour of the evening.
Though the Tani was detailed, the elite and engrossed audience were not deprived of a RTP. A brief VOT paved way into take off notes of bilahari. RTP Pallavi line dedicated to another avatAra of vishnu - narasimha / abhObila was well intertwined into the Pallavi line to bring in the rAga mudra. The tricky 2 akshara before samam added luster to the unending series of rAgamALika swarAs that were poured alternately by Vid. Ramakrishnan Murthy and Vid. L Ramakrishnan.
Vid. Ramakrishnan Murthy and team demonstrated Eppo varuvaAro could also be presented in an evocative pace. It was presented at a pace, as though he had a train to catch a week later. It certainly opened up another melodious facet of both the composition and the rAga. A grand tribute to KVN bAni here.
While we were wondering what next (as it was nearing scheduled closing time of the concert), Vid. Ramakrishnan Murthy presented a meditative set of 3 shlOkAs in rAgamALika, finally drifting into jalaja bandhu.
Vishnu, Krishna and Narasimha with AnjanEya, Shiva and Parvati would have certainly wished for taking front row seat for such an evocative concert. No doubts these artists will scale heights, and I’m fortunate to be a contemporary to be alive to listen to them in person. No regrets being born late while such splendorous music is on offer now and then.
PS: May be one of the tamburi artists could be more attentive and disciplined on the stage. It was quite evident of the careless strumming of tamburi from my seat.