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Ramakrishnan Murthy @ Sri Rama Seva Mandali, 19th Apr 2017

Vocal : Ramkrishnan Murthy

Violin : B U Ganesh Prasad

Mrudangam : Bangalore V Praveen

Ghatam : Giridhar Udupa

List:

01 shLOkam ( sadguru gajAsyavANi) – shankarAbharaNam

02 chalamElA (varNam) – darbAr – Thiruvottiyur Thyagayya

03 budhamAshrayAmi satatam – nAtakurinji – Dikshitar

04 vAdErA daivamu manaA – pantuvarALi – Thyagaraja  ( A,N,S )

neraval & swara @ ‘dhAtru vinutuDaina thyAgarAjuni ‘

05 rAmakathA sudha – madhyamAvati – Thyagaraja ( A,N,S,T )

neraval & swara @bhAmAmaNi jAnaki saumitri’

06 svAmi mukhyA prANa – yadukulakAmbOji – Purandara Dasa

07 RTP – thODI – khaNDa tripuTa x 2 kaLai +1 eDuppu

rAgamAlika tAnam in thODi,nAgasvarALi, behAg, surutti

pallavi line ‘tArayasadA rAmachandra mUrtE toDita shiva chApa kIrtE’

rAgamAlika swaras in aThANa, kApi, nIlAmbari, darbAri kAnaDa

tani avartanam

08 mAtADa bAradEnO – khamAs – Narahari Dasa

09 shAradE karuNAnidhE – hamIr kalyANi – Chandrasekhara Bharati

10 thillAna ( tOm tOm tadara) – pUrNachandrika – Ramanathapuram Srinivasa Iyengar

11 mangaLam – saurAStram – Thyagaraja

shLOkam ( mangaLam kOsalEndrAya)

Brilliant concert from the young man last evening at the Mandali. It left me with a feeling of completeness in the end. Beautifully conceived and managed concert, with every element included. Everything presented to its fullest. Very measured , very classy.  Loved it.

The pantuvarali made the change. The alapana was good, but wasn’t an awe inspiring one. But the selection of the kriti, the neraval he sang and the swaraprasthana that followed were super class. Without much ado, he launched into an elaborate madhyamavati alapana. Very well done. BUG was equally brilliant in his turn. Ramakatha was my prayers and so it was. Another top notch neraval and fantastic rounds of swaras. The percussion duo played out a rather short tani avartanam. PRaveen was in high spirits, occasionally going over the comfort zone. Udupa as in his usual best through out.

A pallavi was sure to come. But there was a devarnama just before that, set to tune ( rather nicely) by his current guru R K Sriramkumar.  Majestic thOdi alapana started soon. The alternating , multi phase alapana between vocal and violin was real treat. Pallavi was even special. He glided from thOdi to nagasvaravali ( as in grahabhedam) moved to behag and a fleeting moment of surutti. BUG did the same in his turn. Interesting pallavi line, nice round of ragamalika, no trikalam were the highlight of the pallavi. There was another short tani avartanam at the end. Post main had a very moving mAtADa bAradEno, among other things.

A complete package, beautifully presented.

 
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Posted by on April 20, 2017 in Uncategorized

 

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Vinay Sharva @ Sri Rama Seva Mandali , 11th Apr 2017

Vocal : Vinay Sharva

Violin : Vittala Rangan

Mrudangam : Tumkur Ravishankar

Morsing : Bharadwaj Shatavalli

List:

01 karuNimpa (varNam) – sahAna – Thiruvottiyur Thyagayya ( O )

02 yOcana kamala lOcana – darbAr – Thyagaraja

03 tulasidalamulacE – mAyAmALavagauLa –  Thyagaraja ( A,N,S )

neraval & swara @ ‘sarasIruha punnAga champaha pATala kuruvaka’

04 marivErE – Anandabhairavi – Shyama Shasthry

05 bhOgindra shAyinam – kuntaLa varALi – Swathi Thirunal

06 swararAga sudhA – shankarAbharaNam – Thyagaraja ( A,N,S,T )

neraval & swara @ ‘mUlAdhAra nAda merugutE mudamagu mOkSamurA’

07 jayatu kOdaNDarAma – pantuvarALi – Purandara Dasa ( Raga sketch)

08 muddugArE yashOdA – kurinji – Annamacharya

09 thillAna – dhanAshrI – Swathi Thirunal

10 patiki hArati rE – surutti – Thyagaraja

mangaLam kOsalEndrAya ( shLOkam)

Another youngster who had been recognised by the Mandali this year. Congratulations to the artist.

He started the concert with a neat rendition of the sahAna varnam followed with a non-impressive yochana….

(swalpa sharp…in monitor)

Announced mayamalavagaula and sang a good alapana. Tulasidalamulace was with a nice neraval and good rounds of kalpana swaras as expected.

(tumba humming barutaayide,  base reduce maadi, sharpness beku)

Nice Anandabhairavi, some tricky sangatis.

(hand signal indicating sharpness again)

Bhogindra shayinam, with no fireworks.

( pleads again for sharpness, this time from Ravishankar)

Declaration of Shankarabharanam as main. He sang a fabulous alapana of Shankarabharanam, despite a patchy start. He was at home in the higher registers. Sang some delectable phrases in tara sthayi. Very impressive longish passages, some breath taking (literally) ones.  Vey very impressive. Vittalarangan did a commendable job as well.

( One final ask for sharpness)

Swara raga sudha is one of my favourite. He sang it well. Pretty good neraval as well and an elaborate kalpana swara in two speeds. Some nice calculative patterns from the youngster.

Post main had an impressive devarnama in Pantuvarali. A short , refreshing alapana reflective of the mood of the song was very good.  An Annamayya kriti and a thillana concluded the concert.

 
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Posted by on April 12, 2017 in Uncategorized

 

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Bharat Sundar @ Sri Rama Seva Mandali, Fort School , 10 Apr 2017

Vocal : Bharat Sundar

Violin : Mathur Srinidhi

Mrudangam : S Ashok

Ghatam : B R Ravikumar

List:

01 evaraNi nirNayincirira – dEvAmrtavarSiNi – Thyagaraja

02 marivErE dikkevaru – latAngi – Patnam Subramanya Iyer ( N,S )

neraval & swara @ ‘monarimpa vinavE nI varada venkaTEshvara ‘

03 sharaNam sharaNam enrAnE – saurAStram – Arunachala Kavi ( A )

04 ninnADa nEla – kannaDa – Thyagaraja ( O,S )

05 koluvai unnADe kOdaNDapANi – bhairavi – Thyagaraja ( A, N, S, T )

neraval & swara @ ‘ toLi karmamanaga jUtamu rArE ‘

06 rAmanai bhajitAl – mAND – Papanasam Sivan

07 venkaTAchala nilayam – sindhubhairavi – Purandara Dasa ( A )

08 mangaLam – saurAStram / surutti – Thyagaraja

This was the second concert of the evening. I reached while Ritwik Raja was having an elaborate neraval for munnu rAvaNa. Both Bharat Sundar and Ritwik Raja were awarded this years Yuva Puraskar by the Mandali. Good choices and my congratulations to both the recipients.

Bharat Sundar’s concert started on a low key but steadily progressed very well. Like all the youngsters, he too had his inclination towards speed. If he had dropped the speed by a pint or so, this would have been more appealing.

He did not have cracker of a start. evarani was a dampner, some how it did not really impressed me. Had he started at anupallavi, it might have made some impact. Then came the  Latangi Express, fast neraval and faster kalpana swaras. Hmm.

Now he did a wonderful thing. Started alapana for Saurashtram. Despite being on a faster side, I liked it. One, no one sing saurashtram alapana these days. Second, he chose a kriti which isnt heard even if some one takes up saurashtram in a concert. Good job. Commendable.  Another fast paced Kannada kriti came, but I will let it pass.

Bhairavi was main. Long alapana, lot of fragmented intelligent phrases. Some fantastic passages creating aha moments. But, I am yet to recover from the previous days effect created by Abhishek at Seshadripuram. So, there. Koluvai Unnade again, second day in succession. Again, retention power to blame.  Having said that, Bharat Sundar sang a tremendous neraval at toli karmamanaga followed up with a decent kalpana swaras. Bangalore Brother S Ashok, this time on stage with Mrudangam played an impressive tani avartanam with Ravikumar. Percussion was on a lower volume level, but did accompany neatly through out.

By now, he was settled. I liked the next couple of pieces the best. Ramanai Bhajital was very good. The sindhu bhairavi alapana to me was the best of the evening. Mathur Srinidhi , who was having an excellent day added to the main artists alapana with his own impressive play.

Very talented youngster, excellent musical ideas. I am sure I will listen to many more of his concert in the years to come.

 
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Posted by on April 11, 2017 in Uncategorized

 

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S Sowmya @ Sree Ramaseva Mandali, Fort School Grounds 05 May 2016

Vocal : S Sowmya

Violin : Charulatha Ramanujam

Mrudangam : H S Sudheendra

Ghatam : Giridhar Udupa

List :

01. vanajAkSirO (varNam) – kalyANi – Ramanathapuram Srinivasa Iyengar ( S )

02. alakalalla lAdaga – madhyamAvati – Thyagaraja (S )

03. mAyUranAtham anisham bhajAmi – dhanyAsi – Dikshitar ( A )

04. manavinAlakinca rAdatE – naLinakanti – Thyagaraja ( S )

05. amba mInalOcani Ashrita – nAyaki – Mayuram Viswanatha Shasthri ( A )

06. vandE sadA padmanAbham – navarasa kannaDa – Swathi Thirunal

07. RTP – SaNmukhapriya – khaNDa triputa x 2 , +1.5 Eduppu

pallavi line ‘shrI rAma raghuvarA sadA mAmpAhi

tani Avartanam

rAgamalika swaras in ‘valaji, sunAdavinOdini ? , rEvati , surutti

08 bAgilenu teredu – rEvati – Kanaka Dasa

09. chaliyE kunjan mE – brindAvan sArang- Swathi Thirunal

10. mangaLam – saurAshtram

inally rain gods were happy and lashed the city. So was the musical showers at the Mandali last evening. Sowmya, whom I am listening live after a long gap, presented a scholarly concert in not so comfortable environment. Her voice seems to have lost some power and there was mild strain at higher octaves, but she sang very well within her limitations.  What impressed me immensely was the selection of kritis, not often ones in common ragas.

Kalyani varnam, vanajakshirO of Poochi Iyengar was a bright start, adding a few rounds of Kalpana swaras. A unexpected madhyamavati, a rather obscure kriti ( these days at least, not withstanding the MDR rendition available) was very well received. She did made few points regarding this kriti at the end, bringing references to the meaning ( mild movement of the lock of hair in the forehead of Lord Rama in breeze, musically represented by the composers in some flowing sangatis). She also mentioned the way MDR sing those sangatis bringing out the subtle beauty of the composition.

A classy dhanyasi alapana came in next. Long, elaborate and bringing out the shear beauty of the raga. Charulatha played an equally good alapana in her turn. Again, the selection of the kriti was highly appreciable. The only recent reference of some one singing mAyUranAtham is by Vid.Vijay Siva. One was hoping for a neraval and few rounds of swara , but she decided otherwise. She did amends with the next one, where she sang some mesmerising swaras, which also brought in thunder showers to the location. First signal came in with a stream falling on to  my right hand. Soon, there was multiple drops around, including a few on stage directly impacting Charulatha. She shifted two steps behind (from forward short leg position to squareleg) and Sowmya , who was already singing very close to the mike, inched forward a little. Few vessels ( basins) brought in and placed on stage for capturing the water. The whole melee took a short while, and finally the team moved to the right readjusting themselves to most suitable positions. The team on stage, were generally in good humour and not complaining.

Once settled, the concert resumed with a fabulous nAyaki alapana.Another not much heard kriti of Mayuram Viswanatha Shasthry was presented. A short navarasa kannada composition paved way to the main.Shanmukhapriya alapana was decent, but the tanam that followed was probably the best of the evening. Outstanding piece of singing by Sowmya with an equally brilliant violin support. Good pallavi line,deploying ‘swarakshara’ in the uttarangam ( sa da ma pa). Interesting trikaalam, where instead of the usual half speed ( 2 tala cycle) and multi speed ( two pallavi cycle in same tala cycle), she did 2 tala cycle and 3 tala cycle for pallavi.

Sudheendra and Udupa was in good form. Sudheendra probably was a little too excited through out the day. The duo played an entertaining tani avvartanam. Sowmya continued the pallavi with ragamalika swaras post the tani avartanam. Post main was again nothing noteworthy. But the concert despite the unforeseen circumstances was still a top class one.

 
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Posted by on May 6, 2016 in Uncategorized

 

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M S Sheela @ Sree Ramaseva Mandali, Fort school, 04 May 2016

Vocal : M S Sheela

Violin : Nalina Mohan

Mrudangam : H S Sudheendra

Morsing : B Rajashekhar

List:

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.

 
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Posted by on May 5, 2016 in Uncategorized

 

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