Sunday, April 1, 2007

Thematic Concerts

It has always been very interesting and challenging for me to give thematic concerts once in a while. This, according to me, is an excellent opportunity for artistes to do a good amount of research and learn new songs to fit into the theme chosen.

I would like to share with you some of the thematic concerts that I have presented in the past:

1. One Raga - One Krithi concert organized by Mudhra. I have sung two such concerts for them. One was a concert comprising of only the ragam Varali. Another similar concert I gave was based on the raga Kalyani. I think this kind of a concert helps us in exploring our Manodharma (imagination) to the fullest.. This concert was truly a great experience for me!

2. Concerts comprising of only Thevaram (Tamil hymns), sung under the auspices of Ramalinga Pani Manram. Such concerts again, helped me to learn a lot of these beautiful ancient Tamil verses.

3. Concerts comprising of verses from the Divya Prabandham, sung under the auspices of Alwargal Mayyam.

4. Concert comprising of Tamil songs on Lord Nataraja of Chidambaram, covering a wide gamut of composers ranging from Pattinathar, Naalvar Thevarams to contemporary composers. This special thematic concert was organized by Centre of Pondicherry of the Ecole francaise d'Extreme- Orient during their Classical Tamil Seminar.

5. Concert based on the theme of Nava Vidha Bhakthi, from among compositions of Sri.Papanasam Sivan

6. Concert titled Avatara Vaibhavam sung as part of a series during the Tyagaraja Aradhana celebration under the auspices of Sri Thyaga Brahma Gana Sabha.

7. Concert based on Sri Adi Shankara's Shanmatham theme.

8. Concert with songs in Allied Ragas. This again was a new effort, wherein, an attempt was made to bring out the distinctive differences between closely related ragas.

9. Bharatiyin Vanna Mani Maalai- exclusive concert of songs of the great poet, Mahakavi Subramania Bharathi.

8 comments:

Sathej said...

Kunthalam, Varali and Kunthalavarali Album:

A really nice album. Great effort.
Some Notes:
I made these notes while listening to the album.I made sure that I listened to every composition atleast thrice to avoid errors.Even so,there may be some mistakes,for which only my limited knowledge is to be blamed.And there are a few suggestions, which again may not be right all the time.But,I am just stating what I feel after listening.Maybe,more listening may educate me better.

Varali:
The Virutham at the beginning is very well presented. The phrases
Vedhanaiaga and mEl Enna Seivenadi especially are fascinating with good Raga Bhavam.

The Varnam is a rare one and it is just great. What emotions conveyed!Enathu Shokhame, Vaaduvathai Paarthirundhum are two lines rendered with immense Bhavam and are highly moving.The phrases in Mukthayi Swaram MM GGR GGR SS - could have had more Gamakam on Gandharam. The phrase PMG, MG, DPMGGRS in the third Chittai Swaram has a good embellished Gandharam.

Karuna Judavamma:
The Alapana seemed a little hurried. But,so is the demand of recordings. There is a very brief flash with Punnagavarali by the violinist reminding me of Shri Lalgudi deliberately doing it in the Airport concert of Shri Semmangudi.Nice elaborate Sangathis in the Pallavi.A Sahithya query.
Is it Pancha Nadeshu or Pancha Nadeshu in the Anupallavi?
The Swarams are very nice.The usage of GGMM, GGDD twice reminds me of the Parur Violin school. SPMPMG, RSNS is vintage Semmangudi.
Sufficient Kanakku is also shown.

Sathej said...

Onto Kunthalam:
Kunthalam,if I am not wrong,is an Asampurna Mela of Kanthamani with the difference being absence of Nishadam in the Arohanam(for Kunthalam)

mAti mAti, a rare Krithi is rendered well.The phrase dAtika in Datika Daivamu is really nice with good modulations.In the phrase Pogaduchu Thiruguchu,while singing in the Melsthayi-the final time, there appears to be a slight discomfort. In the Swaram section - dwelling on Gandharam and then moving to lower Nishadam, and Dhaivatham has a good effect.The Swarams,on the whole are good.
Sufficient Kanakku.

Virutham by Adi Sankara:
The first time when the words kuntalaalankrutaam are sung, a little more modulation could have been used.But,I guess, it is sung the way it is because it is more of a Shlokam.
Sri Sugandhi, the Dikshithar Krithi is presented well with neat Chittai Swarams.

Kunthalavarali:
Words are insufficient,really to elucidate my feelings.I listened to the Thillana and decided to wind up as it was already 12:45 AM. Bu,the Thillana has this Charanam in Kunthalavarali which just mesmerized me.Great beauty!It compelled me to listen to the Krithis.And Kannathandri was nice.The Alapana preceding it just took me to blissful heights. Bhogindra Shaayinam was also excellent with good violin support.The Swarams here could be tried in Vilamba Kalam.

To summarize, a great listening experience with a good Kunthalam, great Varali and a truly Sowykhyamana Kunthalavarali.Great effort in presenting Rare Krithis.Wonderful!

Excuse any errors as it is already 1:25AM as I type this.

Sathej said...

The Sahithya query in my first post should have been Pancha Nadeshu or Pancha Nadheshu.Sorry for the typo.
Sathej

Gayathri Girish said...

Hi,
Glad to note that you enjoyed the album and that you have taken the trouble to keenly listen and make the above observations..

The Varali Krithi is on Goddess Dharmasamvardhani and the sahityam is Pancha Nadeshu.

And,I shall definitely sing Vilambakala swarams for Bhogindra Sayinam in a concert!

Gayathri

Sathej said...

Thanks so much for the clarification amidst your busy schedule.
Sathej

Sathej said...

Thank you so much once again for a clear explanation.
Sathej

Gayathri Girish said...

This song in Varali is on Goddess Dharmasamvardhani of Tiruvaiyaru, and hence comes the name "Pancha Nadeshu [5 rivers- thiru-ai(five)-aaru (river)] Rani".Pancha means 5, nadi means river, isha refers to Lord Shiva, who is known as Panchanadeeshwarar at Tiruvaiyaru.

Gayathri

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