T.N.Seshagopalan @ Brahma Gana Sabha, Chennai

Venue: Sivagami Pettachi Auditorium, Luz Church Road, Mylapore, Chennai

Date: 31 Dec 2006

Organizer: Brahma Gana Sabha

Vocal: Sri T.N. Seshagopalan (TNS)

Vocal Support: Sri T.N.S. Krishna

Violin: Sri M. Chandrasekaran (MC)

Mridangam: Sri Umayalpuram K. Sivaraman (UKS)

Khanjira: Sri B. Sree Sundar Kumar

List of songs:

1) bhajana sEyavE – kalyANi – rUpakam – thyAgarAja (OS)

2) satguru swAmiki – rItigowLa – Adi – rAmanAtapuram srInivAsa iyengAr

3) Ananda naTamADuvAr – pUrvikalyANi – rUpakam – nIlakanTa sivan (AS)

4) ambA nIlAyadAkshi – nIlAmbari – Adi – muthuswAmi dIkshitar

5) tappulaniyu – bowLi – rUpakam – harikEsanallUr muthiAh bhAgavatar

6) sonnAl ozhiya – kannaDa – Adi – UthukkADu venkaTasubbaiyer

7) vAnchatOnu nA – karnaranjani – Adi – (tisra gati) – harikEsanallUr muthiAh bhAgavatar

8 ) dAsharatE – tODi – Adi – thyAgarAja (ANST)

9) kalau kalmasha (viruttam) – ??

hariguNa gAvat – ?? – Adi – mIrAbAi

10) dIm tadara tAni (tillAnA) – bilahari – Adi – ariyakkuDi rAmAnuja iyengAr

11) vachana miga (tiruppugazh) – suruTTi – chatusra jampa – aruNagirinAthar

12) pavamAna (mangaLam) – sowrAshTram – Adi – thyAgarAja

13) sriya kAntAya (slOkam) – srI

(Key: O=raga outline, A=raga alapana, N=neraval, S=kalpana swaram, T=taniavartanam)

This concert was supposed to have happened earlier towards the initial stages of Brahma Gana Sabha’s festival but had got postponed as Sri TNS had been indisposed then. Some of my friends who went to the concert then to see the TNS+UKS combination were very frustrated over its cancellation. Since I was not there in Chennai at that time, I was keenly looking forward to Brahma Gana Sabha holding it in the latter half of their festival.

Sri TNS warmed up with “bhajana sEyavE” in kalyANi. Kalpana swarams were put at “vAda tarka mEla” in the charaNam. A relatively short but delightful pUrvikalyANi alapana, a slow and moving rendition of “ambA nIlAyadAkshi” and a few Sri Muthiah Bhagavathar compositions set the stage for the main composition of the day – “dAsharatE” in tODi.

The tODi alapana was an elaborate affair. It lasted for about 18 minutes and reminded me of a much longer tODi I had heard him sing in Bangalore a few months back (the Bangalore one is probably the best tODi I have heard till now) . Sri TNS did graha bhedam with rishabam as the base to sing mOhanakalyANi and with dhaivatam as base to sing kEdAram. Sri M. Chandrasekaran during his turn in the alapana also did graha bhedam with madhyamam as the base to play Anandabhairavi in kavaDi chindu style. The neraval and kalpana swarams sung for the kriti were fantastic as well. After the last kalpana swaram by Sri TNS ended, Sri UKS requested Sri MC to play kalpana swaram on the violin before the taniavartanam began. Sri MC initially would play a few phrases and allow Sri UKS to play his replies on the mridangam. After hearing him exactly translate whatever he played on the violin on the mridangam with some very good use of gumukis, Sri Chandrasekaran said “aaha … enakku idha kettunde irukkalaam pola irukku (aaha …. I just feel like simply listening to your mridangam)” to which Sri TNS jokingly remarked “naa rendu per odadhaiyum kettindirukken (and I am listening to you both)”.

The taniavartanam which Sri UKS and Sri Sundar Kumar played was also awesome. Sri UKS showed some very good use of gumukis again to create so many different pleasing sounds during the initial phase. Sri Sundar Kumar, who is no stranger to playing with Sri UKS, played brilliantly whenever his turn came.

TNS wound up the concert with a mangalam and with the slOkam “sriya kAntAya“. The really delightful part of this slOkam rendition was when Sri TNS held his breath and elaborated the raga srI just using the word “srI” from the beginning of the song. A wonderful concert from Sri TNS once again.

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One thought on “T.N.Seshagopalan @ Brahma Gana Sabha, Chennai

  1. sivapriya krishnan says:

    This was a fabulous concert that i heard this season. TNS was in full form with able support by the accompaniments.

    If Todi had no comparison, the Marwa Behag bhajan could put any hindustani musician of repute even to shame.

    TNS can be compared only with himself !!

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