Vocal : M S Sheela
Violin : Nalina Mohan
Mrudangam : H S Sudheendra
Morsing : B Rajashekhar
01. ninnE kOriyunnAdi (varNam) – kAnaDa – Thiruvottiyur Thyagayya
02. garuDa gamana samayamidE – nAgasvarLAi – Thyagaraja ( A,S )
03. E mani pogadugurA – vIravasantam – Thyagaraja
04. nAradamuni vedalina – pantuvarALi – Thyagaraja ( A,N,S )
neraval & swara @ ‘ nArAyaNa nAmamulanu pArAyaNa moralincuDu’
05. paTTiviDuvarAdu – manjari – Thyagaraja
06. sarasvatIm bhagavatIm – hamsavinOdini – Jayachamarajendra Wodeyar ( A )
07. teliyalEru rAma – dhEnuka – Thyagaraja ( S )
08. vara rAga layA – chenchu kAmbOji – Thyagaraja
09. shrI chAmuNDEshvari pAlayamAm – bilahari – Mysore Vasudevachar
10. rAma kathA sudhA – madhyamAvati – Thyagaraja ( A,N,S,T )
neraval & swara @ ‘bhAmAmaNi jAnakI saumitrI ‘
11. hAgE irabEku samsAradalli – mOhanam – Purandara Dasa
12. mElukO shrI perundEvi maNavALA – bhauLi – Alluri Venkatadri Swamy
13. karuNA jaladhE dAsharathE – pIlu – Thyagaraja (not sure if it is the same song)
14. bhAgyAda lakSmi bArammA – madhyamAvati – Purandara Dasa
15. mangaLam – saurAshtram – Thyagaraja
I haven’t attended many concerts this Ramanavami season. Of the 10 odd concert that I manage to be part of, this one, undoubtedly was the best. She was in her elements. Almost everything was perfect in planning and execution. The supporting team was so prompt and apt with their participation.
Some days, it is difficult to select what was your pick of the day. Yesterday was one such. Outstanding pantuvarali , fabulous swara for nagasvarali, nice hamsavinodini alapana ( though I’ve heard her sing this many times and every time I mistook it for ravichandrika), very intelligent selection of shorter pieces – be it veeravasantam, manjari, dhenuka or chenchu kamboji – which helped in cleverly pace the concert, marvelous madhyamavati , especially the neraval and brilliant and elaborate kalpana swaras …you decide.
Having caught in the web of Bangalore traffic, I could reach the place midway through the varnam. As we settled in and ready to receive, she started a nice little nagasvarali alapana. Cracking rounds of kalpana swaras set the stage for the remaining of the evening. After every detailed exposition, she sandwiched with a short piece, very intelligently selected. Veeravaantam was done after nagasvarali and before pantuvarali. Classy pantuvarali alapana by both vocalist and violin followed by a impressive nAradamuni vedalina. As I always maintain, apantuvarali or purvikalyani upfront in the concert gives it an uplift. Crisp neraval and a very very impressive kalpana swaras. Awesome stuff. A detailed hamsavinodini alapana, very elaborate and scholarly exposition.
Couple of short pieces in quick succession. Dhenuka was very moving, including the swaras she sang at the end. Even the swaras were sung in unhurried leisurely way. A chit was forwarded to her and she enquired ‘bilahari?’. I guessed the requester probably wanted bilahari as main. Though she obliged the request, it was not main. This session probably could have worked better.
Madhyamavati main was a fitting tribute to Thyagaraja, whose 250th birthday was yesterday, as I see in few posts. In fact, she sang most of the kritis of Thtagaraja’s compositions. Alapana was grand, meticulous clearly build and progressed as one would expect. Nalina Mohan too did a commendable job. Rama katha sudha was no surprise. She sang very detailed neraval and even bigger kalpana swaras. Some intelligent swara patterns, impressive laya intricacies which was fabulously supported by the percussion team was pleasure to watch. Rajashekhar on morsing was having a field day, bringing out some unheard sounds and techniques with the tiny instrument. once during the neraval, he played without using his right hand – using only mouth – for an entire cycle of neraval. Occassionally, he got carried away, over enthusiasm taking the control over restraint, caused minor trouble to the violinist. However, the percussion duo played a good tani avartanam.
Post main had a series of shorter pieces. I am one who likes some innovation here. Instead of singing 5 compositions mixing it with shlokams or ugabhogas would have made better appeal to me. However, having witnessed a fabulous concert, I have no complaints this time.