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S R Maruthiprasad at Sri Rama Seva Mandali, Koramangala 26 March 2018

Vocal : S R Maruthiprasad

Violin : R Achyutha Rao

Mrudangam : V R Chandrashekar

Ghatam : S Srishylan

List:

01 shLOkam ( praNAmya shirasA dEvam gaurIputram vinAyakam) – gauLa

praNamAmyaham shrI gaurIsutam – gauLa – Adi -Mysore Vasudevachar ( S )

02 nAda sudhA rasambilanu – Arabhi – rUpakam – Thyagaraja ( O )

03 ETi janmamiti hA rAmA – varALi – mishrachAp – Thyagaraja ( A,N )

neraval @ ‘ sAgarashayanuni tyAgarAjunutuni’

04 shrIpatiyu namagE sampadavIyali – shrI – khaNDachAp – Purandara Dasa

05 dAsharathi mahanIya – kEdAragauLa – Adi – P T Narasimhachar (Pu Thi Na ) ( A,S ,T )

06 shLOkam ( kUjantam rAma rAmEti madhuram madhurAkaram) – shubhapantuvarALi

rAma rAma rAma sItA rAma ennirO – shubhapantuvarALi – Adi tisragati – Purandara Dasa

07 rAmanAma pAyasakkE – jana sammOdini? – Adi – Purandara Dasa

08 elli nODidaralli rAma – pantuvarALi – mishra chAp – Kanaka Dasa

09 shLOkam ( shrI vatsAnkita shrI kaustubhadhara)

gOvardhana giridhara – darbAri kAnaDa – Adi – Narayana Theertha

10 tUgiri raghurAmana ghanashyAmana –  hindustAni kApi  – mishra naDai – P T Narasimhachar ( Pu Thi Na )

11 mangaLam – saurAStram – Thyagaraja

shLOkam ( mangaLam kOsalEndrAya) – madhyamAvati

What a fine musician he is. This isn’t first time I am listening to him, but it indeed was for the first time I am attending his concert.  I’ve listened to him multiple times in the Bangalore FM amrutavasrhini program and each time, he has impressed me. So, this was an occasion I was looking forward to and he did not disappoint me.

Solid voice, excellent at the lower octaves. Absolute beauty in his diction and the way he split the lines to get the absolutely correct meaning of the kritis.  Very high on emotive scale – I don’t deny his handicap is adding to our appreciation. I could see visible movements of emotions around me when he was singing the varALi kriti and the shubhapantuvarali. That aside,  he sang brilliantly. Super selection of kritis including some beautiful devarnamas, which is his forte.

Took a while to settle, with the lack of feedback and some balancing of volumes. That largely impacted the Arabhi piece after a good gaula. Violin volume continue to be on a lower side through out, which not only affected the overall listening pleasure, but his interest in the scheme of things. Percussion support was a surprise package. Sri S R Chandrashekar played very well through out the evening, including a nice little tani avartanam.

Only two alapana , in varALi and kEdAragauLA, pretty good on both occasions. Kedaragaula was done in a relatively faster tempo. Violin was even faster, loosing some of the sheen out of the same.  Pu Thi Na’s composition was a good choice, not heard before.

As requested by the organiser, he sang a lot of devarnama in the concert. The ‘shrI patiyu namage’ still linger in mind. Even the others were sung with  a lot of elan, soaked in ‘bhAva’ , clear articulation of words so that the meaning comes out clearly.  It is always a pleasure to listen to Karnataka Artists singing devarnamas.

If you look at the list with a typical concert scheme, there are a lot of missing things ( only two alapana, one neraval, only a couple of kalpana swaras at the end of the kriti etc). But if you are one who experienced this last evening, you probably carry the music with you beyond the music hall and there in lies the success of a good concert.

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Posted by on March 27, 2018 in Uncategorized

 

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Kanchana Sisters @ Sri Rama Seva Mandali , Koramangala 25 March 2018

Vocal : Kanchana Sisters ( Sriranjani & Shrutiranjani )

Violin : Charulatha Ramanujam

Mrudangam : Anoor Ananthakrishna Sharma

Morsing : Bharadwaj Satavalli

List:

01 jaya jaya jaya jAnaki kAntA – nATa – khaNDa chAp – Purandara Dasa ( S )

02 sarasa sAmadAna – kApinArAyaNi –  Adi – Thyagaraja ( N,S )

neraval & svara @ ‘hitavu mAtalendO bAga baliktivi’

03 mOkSamu galadA – sArAmati – Adix2 – Thyagaraja  ( started at ‘sAkSAtkAra’ )

04 apparAma bhakti entO – pantuvarALi – rUpakam- Thyagaraja ( A,N,S )

neraval & svara @ ‘kapi vAridhi dATunA kaliki rOta gaTunA’

05 nannu pAlimpa -mOhanam – Adi x 2 – Thyagaraja ( A,S,T )

06 shiva shiva shiva ennirO – rEvati – kanaka Dasa

07 hanuma bhIma mAdhva muniya – hamsAnandi ? – rUpakam -Purandara Dasa

08 jagadOdhAraNa – kApi – Adi x 2 – Purandara Dasa

09 shrIrAmachandra krpAlu – yamunAkalyANi ? – mishra chAp – Tulsidas

10 bhAgyAda lakSmi bAramma -madhyamAvati – Adi – Purandara Dasa

I am attending their concert for the first time ( vaguely remember listening to them on a telecast) and they did make a good impression on me yesterday. Very energetic concert, no drag, no unwanted musical ‘show off’, very refreshing singing. Senior accompaniment support by Charulatha and Anoor Ananthakrishna Sharma did help to lift the concert.

I am impressed with their presentation, the way they sang kalpana swaras, the ease with which they traversed , shared the alapana, the clarity with which sangatis were sung, some innovative bhrigas ( some of them weren’t all that appealing) , or not traveling the often repeated paths.

The antenna went up with the kalpana swaras for nATa, especially the rehearsed joint-effort to conclude the piece. Short outline of kApinArAyani, and sarasa sAmadAna was good with neraval at hitavu mAtalento. some verbal gymnastics, at hitavu and matalento was ok. Very refreshing start of kalpana swaras and the ending of the kriti with ‘chatura- daNDa caturA – bhEda daNDa caturA – dAna bhEda daNDa caturA – sAma dAna bhEda daNDa caturA – sarasa sAma dAna bhEda daNDa catura ‘ sequence.  Interesting, but did not really have any musical appeal. Saramati sketch followed with the sAkSAtkAra’ start. Not very great, probably because their voice is not that powerful to create that impact.

Shared alapana of pantuvarali was good. Good pick of apparama bhakti. Typical neraval and kalpana swaras. PAntuvarali neraval and swaras can never disappoint me. Elaborate mOhanam alapana, again shared by both the sisters. Some nice phrases, good at the higher registers, and those fast ‘akara’ takes. Charulatha started with the nannu palimpa movements in her alapana, which was very good. The hint was indeed right, nannu palimpa was sung well. No neraval, but some intricate laya play in the kalpana swaras. Unlike other swaras, this was sung in two speeds. I liked it. Anoor Ananthakrishna Sharma played yet another commendable tani avartanam with Bharadwaj.

nice selection of devarnamas in the post main too, some of them aren’t heard much in concert. The jagadhOdharana started as an ugabhOga like start at ‘aDisidaLu yashOdA , magana’  repeated a few times before singing the composition. Not sure what was the idea, but it would have been better with out that. A Tulasidas bhajan before the closure of the concert with bhAgyAda lakSmi.

 
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Posted by on March 26, 2018 in Uncategorized

 

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Ashwathnarayanan @ Ramaseva Mandali, Koramangala 08 Apr 2017

Vocal : Ashwathnarayanan

Violin :Pappu Gyandev

Mrudangam :-H S Sudheendra

Ghatam : Phanindra  Bhaskara

List :

01 nera nammiti (varNam) – kAnaDa – Ramanathapuram Srinivasa Iyengar

02 varAlanDu kommani – gurjari – Thyagaraja ( S )

03 jaya jaya jaya jAnaki kAnta – nAta – Purandara Dasa ( O,S )

04 jnAna mosaga rAdA – pUrvikalyANi – Thyagaraja ( A,N,S )

neraval & swara  @ ‘paripUrNa niSkaLanka niravadhi sukhadAyaka ‘

05 mAmava pattAbhirAma – maNirangu – Dikshitar

06 rAma rAma rAma rAma, rAmA yennirO – vasanta – Purandara Dasa ( S )

07 nA moravina rAdA – gOpriya – Dr S Ramanathan

08 ELa nI dayarAdA – aThANa – Thyagaraja

09 nannu pAlimpa – mOhanam – Thyagaraja ( A,N,S,T )

neraval & swara @ ‘karamuna shara kOdaNDa kAntitO’

10 bArO krSNayya – rAgamAlika – Kanaka Dasa ( Short sketch of mAND)

11 anri ulagam ( tirupavai) – bhImpLAs? – Andal

12 thillAna – chenchurutti – Veena Seshanna

13 srIrAma chandranukku jayamangaLam ( mangaLAm) – madhyamAvati – Arunachala Kavi

Proximity is not the only reason I decided to attend to Ashwathnarayanan today over other established artists at other venues. This year, I have decided to listen to as many youngsters as possible. His name has been coming up for a while as a name to watch out for. And yesterday’s concert fit that bill, perfectly well.

He has a strong powerful voice, with ease of deployment. Very clear diction, synonymous to the school and lineage he belong to, and a solid stage presence. He is very young and a bit of experience and polishing can catapult him into the big league.

He and the crew did a commendable concert yesterday. Very interesting choices of raga, some memorable swaraprasthana for the main, very moving melodious gurjari and some classy neraval for both Purvikalyani and Mohanam.

The area he might need to focus on ( for that matter most of the youngsters) is the kalapramanam. I guess, they carried away with the excitement and tends towards speed over ‘soukhyam’. Manirang, vasanta and aThana suffered from this. It could also possibly due to an over enthusiastic percussion support. Many times, I found HSS playing the beats different from the sahitya pattern, unsettling the flow. Also, each song ended with an unnecessary longer ‘theermanam’ ( or whatever it is called).

Only two alapana ( barring a short mAND sketch) in the evening. He can definitely organise it better. But both were scholarly. Mohanam especially was very good. These youngsters have a lot of ideas, but will have to sort of ‘organise’ these into a smoother delivery. Neraval for both purvikalyani and mohanam were very good. He has such a strong control over the laya, which was evident even in the singing of ‘sahitya’. His kalpana swara patterns were also very impressive, especially the mohanam.

Mamava Pattabhirama was all over the place. For one, he started with some unusual sangatis. The whole song was a bit ‘aggressive’ to my taste. It lost its natural beauty, which is not expected/accepted from some of of KVN’s lineage. He introduced the raga gOpriya to the audience, paying tribute to Dr.S.Ramanathan, whose birth centenary was yesterday. Gopriya is an interesting raga, with notes spread evenly across, making it impossible to do a grahabhedam.  A janya of Rishabhapriya, and not many composition available, apart from the one by Dr.SRamanathan. A nice gesture from the young lad.Post main was a beautifully rendered bAro krSNayya , a tirupavai and Chenchurutti thillana, before mangalam.

Very talented singer with a good voice, clear diction and well groomed manodharma. We will hear more from him and about him in the future.

 
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Posted by on April 9, 2017 in Uncategorized

 

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Pattabhirama Pandit @ Srirama Seva Mandali, Koramangala on 18-Apr-2016

Vocal : Pattabhirama Pandit

Violin : TKV Ramanujacharyulu

Mrudangam : K U Jayachandra Rao

List:

01. shrI patE nI pada – nAgasvarALi – Thyagaraja ( Short Sketch, S )

02. parama pAvana rAma – pUrvikalyANi – Ramanathapuram Srinivasa Iyengar ( A,N,S,T )

neraval & swara @’kanakAmbaradhara karuNAnvita sura’

03. viDalAjaturA – janaranjani – Thyagaraja

04 RTP – thODi – chaturashra triputa, +1 eDuppu

pallavi in rAgamAlika ‘thODi, bilahari, rEvati’

pallavi line ‘ dAsharathE karuNApayOnidhE, ina kula tilakA ‘

rAgamAlika swaras in thOdi, bilahari, rEvati

05 rAma rAma rAma sItA tAma ennirO – tilang – Purandara Dasa

06 kaNDu dhanyanAdE – behAg – Kamalesha Vittala Dasa’  ( A )

07. jagadodhAraNa – kApi -Purandara Dasa

08. mangaLam – saurAStram – Thyagaraja

shLOkam ( mangaLam kOsalEndrAya) – madhyamAvati

Seldom we witness a concert were the second item is taken up as main. Well, I am excluding TMK from this. That lifts the expectation high and it would be a huge task for the artists to sustain the same vigour and standard through out the rest of the evening. Yesterday’s concert of Pattabhirama pandit was one such. What an opening and the first half he had. Beautifully started the concert with a nagasvarali piece after humming through a short alapana in such a moving way. Shripate nee pada was sung very well. He and the team also extended it with some splendid swara patterns. Brilliant start. He soon launched into a classical purvikalyani. Few faster intial phrases moved away to some outstanding passages at the slow speed middle and lower octaves. After a few deliberations he switched the gear with faster akara phrases initially in the lower octaves moving to the higher one. Some breath taking alapana came in at high, full of exquisite combinations and full throated singing. Top class stuff. Ramanujacharyulu was equally brilliant in his turn, largely playing around the same theme and a few improvised takes. Parama pavana rama, was a treat. Very elaborate neraval, at kanakambaradhara was very well done. Kalpana swaras sung at the end was the pinnacle of the performance yesterday. The team jelled well presenting some outstanding swaras. Jayachandra Rao was excellent here. The team was so moved, that Ramanujacharyulu , upon completion of his return, wanted to play along for another rounds before closing down. Unexpectedly, tani was indicated and expectedly Jayachandra Rao played a fitting tani avaratanam.

Having completed only 2 kritis so far, there was an anticipation for a pallavi and I was praying it to be anything other than Keeravani. There was a short janaranjani kriti before pallavi. Thodi it was, but wasn’t one that you talk home about. A fast alapana with few twists and turns came in two spurts, not really impressive. Violin return trid to restore some parity but it was very short to really make an impact. Tanam however was far better.  Both the artists played some delectable rounds of tanam. Interestingly pallavi was sung in 3 ragams. There was no trikalam or any structural intricacies in pallavi execution. Ragamalika swaras followed the same pallavi pattern.

Behag kriti was beautifully sung. A short alapana preceding it was good too. Jagadodharana, which brought in the memory of his legendary guru, was ok. And that ended the concert.

Pattabhirama pandit sang very well. The purvangam of the concert was awesome, and some of those dwindled out as the concert progressed towards the second half. He would have got into the time pressure, and adjusted pallavi to fit into the overall schedule. Very good concert, would have been outstanding with a small tweak in the planning.

 
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Posted by on April 19, 2016 in Uncategorized

 

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Saralaya Sisters @Sri rama seva mandali, Koramangala 15th Apr 2016

Vocal : Saralaya Sisters

Violin : Kalpana Kishore

Mrudangam : Anoor Vinod Shyam

Morsing : Lakshmi Nayarana

List :

01 shLOkam ( AchAryA pavanO) – nATa

namO namO raghukula nAyaka – nATa – Annamacharya ( S)

02 shObhillu saptaswara – jaganmOhini – Thyagaraja

03 eLA nI dayarADu – aThANa – Thyagaraja (O)

04 rAmachandram bhAvayAmi – vasanta – Dikshitar ( A,S)

05 bhAvayAmi raghurAmam  – rAgamAlika – Swathi Thirunal

06 rAma nAma bhajisita – hindOLam – Gopala Dasa

07 parama pAvana rAmA – pUrvikalyANi – Ramanathapuram Srinivasa Iyengar ( A,N,S,T)

neraval & swara @ ‘kanakAmbaradhara  karuNAnvita sura’

*I had to leave at this time

I had a bus to catch, travelling overnight. Planning to attend this was an after thought, to squeeze in an hour or two of listening, before rushing home and pack and leave. Inaugural concert of Sri Rama Seva Mandali ,Koramangala. I was pleasantly surprised to know that they have been conducting Ramanavami programs for the last 39 years.

Concert started 30 mins late, due to power unavailability. Every one including the artists waited patiently , entertaining ourselves with the game of ‘machar-catch’.  A sparce crowd at this time, but filled as the concert began.

I had to leave as young Vinod Shyam started his tani avartanam. Hence, this is an incomplete report and my opinion is based on what I heard, while there. Firstly, artists seems to have been finding it difficult with no feedback speakers. That would have impacted their overall performance.

I found most of the kritis were presented on a faster tempo. Speed in general was the essence. Even the short vasanta alapana was super fast. Having said that, the main pUrvikalyANi was presented very well. The alapana, kriti , neraval and Swara ( looked like they cut short a bit) were done in a pleasing manner. I am expecting that the remaining of they concert would have been just as great if not better.

Other trivial observation was the selection of tala. One could name this as a thematic ‘rUpaka tALa kacheri’. If I remember correct, 5 of the first 6 kritis were set to roopakam. So much so that i started searching for roopakam compositions in purvikalyani while the alapana was going on. I could have mistaken and I am open to corrections…

One takes from this concert was the new violinist on stage. I was given to understand that she has returned from US and this is her first concert in Bangalore since. She did a good job and some of her play during pUrvikalyANi were delectable.

I am listening to ‘Rama nAma bhajisita’ for the first time. I heard, Smt. Seethalakshmi Venkateshan has set this dasar pada ( Gopala Dasa) to tune. Similarly, the opening nATa kriti too was one that is not often heard.

Note: This is prepared and written using my handheld device. No proof read done. Many mistakes can be found. I will edit and correct those on my return.

 
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Posted by on April 16, 2016 in Uncategorized

 

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