Vocal : Sanjay Subrahmanyan
Violin : S Varadarajan
Mrudangam : Palladam Ravi
Ganjira : Alathur Rajaganesh
01 jalajAkshi ninne ( varNam ) – chakravAkam – Patnam Subramania Iyer
02 jaya jaya, jaya jAnaki kAnta – nATa – Purandara Dasa ( S )
03 vinatA suta vAhanuDai – harikAmbOji – Thyagaraja (doubtful) ( A,S )
04 shrI venkaTEsham vAram – thODi – Ramanathapuram Srinivasa Iyengar ( A )
05 kANA kannAyiram vENDum – nIlAmbari – Anai Ayya
06 sukhi evvarO rAma nAma – kAnaDa – Thyagaraja ( A,N,S,T )
neraval & swara @ ‘sukhi evvarO rAma nAma’
07 vandE sadA padmanAbham – navarasa kannaDa – Swathi Thirunal ( O )
08 RTP – pUrvi kalyANi – mishra nadai
pallavi line ‘tamizhukku amudenru peyar , inba tamizh engaL uyirukku nEr’
rAgamAlika swaras in hindOLam, simhEndramadhyamam, patdIp
09 ennamO vagayAy varugidu – khamAs – Ghanam Krishnaiyer
10 lALisidaLu maganA – rAgamAlika (dEsh, jOnpuri?) – Purandara Dasa
11 viruttam ( maruL uravE ennai mayakkiDum ? ) – kApi
Ishanenru guhanE ?? – kApi – ?
12 mangaLam – saurAshtram – Thyagaraja
This concert probably would be talked about for a few days to come. This being his first concert post the announcement of the Sangita kalanidhi selection for this year , the expectations was huge. Concert started off decent, with a chakravakam varnam and the nAta kriti. Few rounds of swaras that accompanied jaya jaya jAnaki kAnta was again good. But his body language, showed a lot more excitement and indicated the mood for the rest of the evening. Those shake of head, those change in direction, the constant shift of seating, general display of restlessness ( in a positive sense, hardly waiting for Varadarajan to complete) were noticed from the beginning. To me, this is the signal of great things to come.
Yesterday, there were 4 alapana and that is the highlight of the evening. Each of them were detailed and presented with great deliberation and differentiation. Hari kamboji was the first and had mostly the traditional fair, hints of its more popular janya at places. The kriti was indeed a welcome change. I was deducing the possibilities and concluded on rAma nannu brOva as a potential choice. However he surprised with a rare piece, which is dubiously attributed to Thyagaraja. Vinata Suta vAhanuDai is a first time listening experience for me. Kriti itself , per se, was decent. He sang some brilliant swaras at the end.
Thodi alapana was the pinnacle of the evening. The start itself was very refreshing. Some of the techniques ( not finding a better word) and the phrases were very unique. The voice was at its best, allowing to experiment and deliver all that he was attempting. He did spend considerable time for alapana up in front. Varadarajan was excellent as always. Poochi kriti was again not often heard one in the concerts. Unlike the medium and fast tempo kritis earlier, this was in much lower speed. There was no neraval or swara here. Another slow neelambari came in before the main, to set the stage.
Kanada alapana was again grand. Largely deploying the familiar phrases, trying various speeds and octaves and focusing on the overall emotive aspect of the raga. Another brilliant return came from Varadarajan. He choose the pallavi line for neraval, started at rAma nAma and switching once ( or twice) to ‘tAraka rAma – sukhi evvarO’. Very elaborate and typical two speed variations , before finishing with a cracker. Surprisingly kalpana swaras was done in a looooong single sequence in the first speed.
Palladam Ravi was a refreshing change and presence on stage. He complimented brilliantly, often filling the pauses with some classy interludes. Often witnessed Sanjay allowing him to complete some of the plays be extending the time for him. The tani avartanam was again very nice. The head shakes and those laborious fast beating of the instrument ( which one usually observe) was much subdued if not eliminated. Alathur Rajaganesh was equally good during tani.
A beautiful navarasa kannada kriti of Swathi Thirunal was sung before the pallavi. I’ve heard Sanjay singing this in detail with an alapana and alpana swaras before. There was few ‘ninnu vinA nAmadentO’ style sangatis here. Not sure if it is in the original. Poorvikalyani was the pallavi. Alapana was again very good. Tanam was sung only in the second speed ( and third , fourth and ..). I am a fan of low speed tanam. A Bharatiyar inspired pallavi line in Tamil was good. Hindolam and patdeep in ragamalika swarams were beautiful.
Already over 3 hrs, the post main was much short, despite the 3-4 songs he did. While they were all good, nothing to boast home about. Even the viruttam was very short ( one line?). But who is complaining, after entertaining us for 3.5 hrs. This was one helluva concert.