Tag Archives: Veena

D Balakrishna with Vamshidhar ( Veena-Venu) at Nadasurabhi Annual Music Festival, 19 Oct 2018

Veena : D Balakrishna

Flute : Vamshidhar

Mrudangam : Anirudh Bhat

Ghatam : Raghavendra Prakash


01 mAtE malayadhwaja (daru varNam) – khamAs – Adi -Muthaiah Bhagavatar

02 shrI varalakSmi namastubhyam – shrI – Roopakam – Dikshitar ( S )

03 cintayAmi jagadambam – hindOLam – Mishra Jhumpa – Jayachamarajendra Wodeyar

04 shrI cAmuNDEshwari pAlayamAm – bilahari – Adi x 2 – Mysore Vasudevachar ( A,S )

05 mAmava janma doDDadu – pUrvikalyANi – Mishra Chap – Purandara Dasa ( A,S )

06 OrajUpu jUcEdi nyAyamA -kannaDa gauLa – Adi – Thyagaraja

07 birAna varalicci – kalyANi – Adi Tisra naDai – Shyama Shasthri ( A,t,N,S,T )

neraval & swaras @ ‘shyAmakRSNa sOdari gauri, paramEshvari girijA’ (?)

08 mAnasa sancararE – sAma – Adi – Sadashiva Brahmendra

09 jagadOdhAraNa – kApi – Adi – Purandara Dasa

10 thillAna – cencurutti – Veena Seshanna

11 mangaLAm – saurAStram – Thyagaraja

shLOkam in madhyamAvati

Very good start of the annual festival of Nadasurabhi, who are celebrating their 25th Anniversary this year. Congratulations to the Nadasurabhi team on this momentous occasion. They have been doing a commendable job over this years and wishing them all the success in future.

You cant ask for a better start to their proceedings of this year’s festival, but with a sedate Veena concert of one of the leading artists of the Mysore School. True to his lineage, the concert was memorable. Largely selected on devi, and from the Mysore composers ( and one piece each from the Trinity), nice mix of talam, it was evident that a lot of thought had gone into the preparation.

To me, the concert livened up from the bilahari. I am not hinting that the prior compositions lacked anything, but one could see a marked difference with the kalpana swaras of bilahari. The pUrvikalyani alapana that followed was delectable. Vamshidhar was very good in his turn of alapana. The swaras that followed were top class.

Kalyani alapana started with a bang ( as they say). I loved the start ( well, then on it was kalyani ūüôā ). However, the tanam which came in was outstanding. Very very elaborate, exquisite and arguably the best part of the concert.¬† It is always a pleasure to listen to tanam on a Veena. Shyama Shasthri’s kriti was nice. There was few rounds of neraval followed by a masterly kalpana swaras, which has some of the intelligent variations on display. The percussion duo played an impressive tani avartanam. I should add that Anirudh Bhat accompanied brilliantly through out the evening.

There was not much to hope for post main, as the crowd was sparse by then. There was time ( until 9:00, said the organisers on his query on how long can I go on) for a couple more. Veena Sheshanna’s thillana was a worthy mention in this segment.¬† Here again, I think the Chencurutti thillana is ‘tailor-made’ for Veena playing.

Impressive concert by Vid Balakrishna and the team on Day1 / Phase1 of the Nadasurabhi Annual Festival.

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Posted by on October 20, 2018 in Concert songlist


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Yogavandana , Veena Concert @ Nadasurabhi, 20th Aug 2016

Veena : Smt. Yogavandana

Mrudangam : Smt. Ranjani Venkatesh

Morsing : Bhagyalakshmi Krishna


01. mAtE malayadhvaja ( daru varNam) – khamAs – Muthaiah Bhagavathar ( O )

02. jaya jaya jaya jAnakI kAnta – nATa – Purandara Dasa (O,S)

03. orAjUpu chUseDi РkannaDagaULa-  Thyagaraja

04. pAlayamAm pArvatIsha – kannaDa – Dikshitar ( A,N,S )

neraval & swara @ ‘gAnAmrta rasapAna’ ??

05.  nEnendu vedakudurA РkarNatakabehAg РThyagaraja

06. rA rA rAjIvalOchana – mOhanam – Mysore Vasudevachar ( A,t,S,T)

07. tungA tIra virAjam  РyamunAkalyANi РKamalesha Vittala

08 thillAna – chenchurutti – Veena Sheshanna

First concert of this years ‘Karnataka Vaibhava’ series started with a beautiful concert by Vidushi Yogavandana.Very rich music, easy and elegant way of playing the instrument and the mannerisms on stage. She received tremendous support from the supporting crew on the stage. An all women ensemble, played very well in tandem.

Concert started brilliantly with the daru varNam of Muthaiah bhagavathar and the nATa kriti of Purandara Dasa, strumming a short raga sketch in both the cases. Kannada was the first detailed alapana, which was done with some style. Palayamam parvatheesha ( announced as Dikshitar kriti, but doubtful) was unexpected, but was welcome. She played short neraval and few rounds of kalpana swaras. Concert until now was mic-less.Late arrival of the mic and amplification came in as a blessing in disguise as one could listen to the artist in close quarters with out artificial amplification. She played another short piece before the amplification was installed.

Main mohanam alapana was very good, tanam was even better. After ‘ra ra rajeevalochana’ , she played some brilliant kalpana swaras first in mOhanam itself and later in as I could gather bhauLi and shivaranjani ( was there a fleeting rEvati as well ?). This part we the best of the concert. The lady percussion duo played an impressive tani avartanam, with Bhagyalakshmi producing some exquisite sounds from the tiny instruments.

Beautiful concert by the vidushi despite the lack of amplification and the distraction in the middle as they were trying to set things up.

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Posted by on August 20, 2016 in Uncategorized


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Rajesh Vaidya , Veena @ ‘sruthimelanam’ , Vellinezhi 23rd Aug 2014

Veena : Rajesh Vaidya

Mrudangam : Umayalpuram Sivaraman

Ghatam : Dr S Karthick

Ganjira : B Shree Sundarkumar


01.  gajAnanayutam РvEgavAhini РDikshitar ( O )

02. vAsudEvayani – kalyANi – Thyagaraja (A,S )

03. tani Avartanam

04. chandraSEkhara – sindhu bhairavi – ?

I do not know if I should put this up here. This cant be really called a concert. Hardly anything was played. More than half of the concert was tani avartanam. Nonetheless, this complete the three concert day at Sruthimelanam. Let it be here for whatever it is worth it.

The function felicitating one of the masters of Kerala percussion Sri Mattannur Shankarankutty ate into the concert time. No surprises here. I have gone through this umpteen times. No such function, especially if it involve ministers and other dignitaries involved ever conclude in stipulated time. The organisers managed the time extra ordinarily well until then probably had to let it go, considering the men on stage. This despite the start at 5:00 pm. Anyway, by the time the non musical functions concluded it was around 8:30.

The stage set for the concert soon, UKS took the mike and announced that this would be a one hour concert as they team has to travel back to Chennai. Luckily, he did not make another long speech. But, it took long to get the mike and amplification of all four instruments set to their desired level, each trying to outwit the other. Once, angrily UKS remarked until his volume is set properly, he is not going to play. Every other participants taking the mike and directing the ‘sound man’ in various language to increase the volume for UKS. It took another 20 mins before they finally set about the concert. UKS had earlier announced the kritis that could be expected from Rajesh Vaidya. It was thus clear that he is going to play only two kritis. I split the list into 4 to make it look decent, separating tani avartanam.

Vegavahini or chakravakam was played ok, adding a few rounds of swarams. UKS was at his elements, lifting the overall effect with his legendary fillers and some clever structural intricacies. The other two leading ‘upa-pakkavadyam’ artists by and large allowed the senior to take lead, playing very subtly through out.

Kalyani alapana was rather interesting. While it was clear that he wsa playing kalyani, one was figuring out what is that he is playing. At time, I thought he was doing some hindustany-ish alaap, at other times he was playing similar to tanam. The nontraditional alapana however did not last long. However, he played the kriti very well with some classy accompaniment from UKS. The swaras were interesting too. The percussion trio, lead by UKS played a long tani avartanam. UKS brilliant as expected and the rest matching to the senior allowing him to get his due credit and respect. Rajesh Vaidya played a quick sindhu bhairavi piece to conclude the concert, pack up , receive the honours from the organisers and leave. 25 mins of tani avartanam and 20 mins of veena playing in total.

This was a big disappointment after a mesmerising concert of AKC Natarajan earlier in the morning and a spellbinding ‘pANDi mELam’ by Peruvanam Kuttan Marar in the afternoon. It is unjust to blame the musicians, as they were ready and waiting for their time. Often these meetings gets extended eating into the musical time. Kathakali artists were readying themselves to take stage by 9:30, their stipulated time and for the rest of the night, until 6:30 am next morning, they enthralled the waiting audience, covering up for this disappointment.

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Posted by on August 27, 2014 in Concert songlist


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Bhagyalakshmi Chandrasekharan , Artsforlife Foundation @ Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, 11 May 2014

Veena : Vid Bhagyalakshmi Chandrasekharan

Mrudangam : C. Cheluvaraju

Duration : 1.00 hrs


01.  sarasUDa (varNam ) РsAvEri РKotthavaasal Venkatrama Iyer  ( O )

02.  gajAdhiSAdanyam na jAnE ham РnATakurinji РMutthuswami Dikshitar ( A,S )

03.  saraswati namOstutE Рsaraswati РN S Ramachandran ( A )

04.  ceDipokE O manasA РlaLita РWalajpet Venkataramana Bhagavathar ( A,t,S )

rAgamAlika swaras in kalAvati, gurjari thODi, dEsh

05. karuNA jaladhE – nAthanAmakriya – Thyagaraja

Arts for Life Foundation, a brain child of Arvind Brahmakal conducted a full day ‘IDEAS CONCLAVE”, yesterday at the Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, on “Karnatak Music- Towards a Mass Appeal”. This event conducted in association with Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, was an after effect of the initial programe that was held at Chennai, which was on the ‘Social Relevance’ of carnatic music. I could be present during the first half of the proceedings where the eminent panel discussed about the importance of bringing the young people to familiarise with carnatic music ( many educationist participated) and the second on the ‘ corporate patronage’. While the attendance was moderate, there were many very high participation from the crowd, with some interesting suggestions.

Smt. Bhagyalakshmi Chandrasekharan’s concert was part of the morning session, immediately after the inaugural function. The concert itself was promoted as ‘meditation through music’, and that exactly what the vidushi did in the given 1 hr of time. Another gem of a concert from the vidushi, with apt selection of kritis and their treatment on a Sunday Morning, with some outstanding percussion support – nimble, sensitive, playing to the mood of the kritis – by sri Cheluvaraju.

Slotted for 1 hr, she made the best use of the time. Credit to be given to the percussion artist who subtly rejected the offer of the time for tani avartanam. We indeed congratulated him for his thoughtful gesture. Her selection of the ragam, the kriti for each of them, the appropriate expansiveness for each of them need appreciation. Every thing she played yesterday was top class.Few rare kritis , both the natakurinji as well as the lalita were new to me. Each of her alapana were brisk and the real essence, the tanam for Lalita, the ragamalika swaras that followed, each were refreshing. I thought she played shubhapantuvarali in the ragamalika, but she corrected me that it was ‘gurjari thODi’ ( shubhapantuvarali minus ‘panchamam’ ?) that came before desh. She concluded the concert with a emotive nathanamakriya. Fabulous concert yet again ..

PS : More info on Art For Life Foundation can be found here. . I expect, the outcome of the IDEAS CONCLAVE will be available for larger rasikas for contemplation and continuation of the discussion. As and when I have the details, I can provide the link here.

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Posted by on May 12, 2014 in Concert songlist


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Bhagyalakshmi Chandrasekaran, Veena Concert @ Nadasurabhi Cultural Association, 15th Dec 2013

Veena : Bhagyalakshmi Chandrasekaran

Mrudangam : Anoor Ananthakrishna Sharma

Morsing : M. Gururaj


01. varNam  РnAyaki РKothavasal Venkataramana Iyer ( O )

02. bhajamAnasa vighnESwaram – bahudhAri – Tulaseevanam ( A,S )

03. saraswati namOstutE – saraswati – N S Ramachandran ( A,S )

04. parama purusham – laLitA panchamam – Swathi Thirunal ( A,S )

05. ethanAi nAL tEDi vandEnE – husEni – Achutadasar ( O )

06. RTP РnAttakurinji Рchaturasra jhumpa x 2 kaLai  +3 eduppu

tAnam in Natakurinji , nAttai, gauLa, Arabhi, varALi, SrI

pallavi line :¬† *¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬† ( couldn’t decipher)

rAgamAlika swarams in shivaranjani, brindAvana sAranga, shubhapantuvarALi, rEvati

tani Avartanam

07. manadir kugandadu ? Рsindhubhairavi РTanjavur Sankara Iyer   ( O )

08. harivarAsanam

09. bhajarE yadunAtham – pIlu – Sadashiva Brahmendra

10. xxx dEviyE sharaNam sharaNam – kurinji – Jaya Anantharaman

11. kAvadi chindu

12. ??  ( another kAvadi chindu?)

13. tungA tIra virAjam – sAlaga bhairavi – Kamalesha Vittala Dasa

14. karuNA jaladhE – nAthanAmakriya – Thyagaraja

15. tirupati venkaTa ramaNA – kannaDa ? – Purandara Dasa?

16. rAmachandrAya janaka (mangaLam) – kurinji – Bhadrachala Ramadas

SLOkam ( manthra pushpam)

The last time I heard her ( at Ranjani Fine Arts), she won everyone’s heart with some exquisite veena playing. The dwijavanti still linger in my memory. Hence the expectation was very high as I entered the hall. It was 4:10 and she was already seated , ready to start. The hall was sparsely populated, a surprise as Nadasurabhi has one of the best captive audiences we can find. The organisers delayed the ‘kick-off’ to another 5 minute by reminding her that the concert is scheduled to begin at 4:15. Luckily and to the goodness of music, the hall filled up as the concert progressed and stayed on until the end of concert, deservedly so.

Yet again, she started off giving me goose bumps, with that short nAyaki sketch. The music originated from those nimble fingers, spread across the room to the minds of the people. A beautiful bahudhari alapana, short and nice saraswati came in full splendor adorned with classicism, continued with few rounds of kalpana swaram for both. Lalitha panchamam alapana was a bit longer, compared to the previous.This was probably, the first time I am hearing an alapana for lalitapanchamam. Swathi Thirunal’s kriti was again brilliant. Another bhava filled husEni came in before the main.

Natakurinji was taken up as main, probably a bit early in the concert, as there was no other detailed piece she performed. The alapana was detailed and proved her mettle again. But what was more appealing was the tanam that followed. Easily switching from one raga to the other in a seamless execution, the effect she created was spellbinding. She did sing the pallavi line along, but I did have difficulty in deciphering the words. The ragamalika swaras were equally eloquent. Anoor Ananthakrishna Sharma and Gururaj, two senior percussion vidvans supported the concert very well through out the evening, beautifully playing along with the instrument. The duo, later played an amazing tani avartanam.

Post main has a long chain of kritis, which kindle the thought that she could have probably included another big piece before the main. However, the long list of ‘tukkadas’ were impressive. The short sindhu bhairavi and nAthanAmakriya raga sketches she played were beautiful. Another beautiful concert from the vidushi yesterday at Nadasurabhi.

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Posted by on December 16, 2013 in Concert songlist


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