Venue: Sri Thiagaraja Sangeetha Vidwath Samajam, 5, Thiagarajapuram, Chennai
Date: 23 Apr 2007
Organizer: Sri Thiagaraja Sangeetha Vidwath Samajam (Sri Thiagaraja Jayanthi Concerts Series)
Vocal: Smt Sangeetha Sivakumar
Violin: Sri M.A. Krishnaswamy
Mridangam: Sri Shertalai Ananthakrishnan
Ghatam: Sri Trichy K. Murali
Tambura: Sri Ganesan
List of songs:
1) karuNimpa (varnam) – sahAnA – Adi – tiruvOtriyUr tyAgayyA
2) tuLasI daLamulacE – mAyAmALavagowLa – rUpakam – thyAgarAja
3) vinatA suta – jayantasEnA – Adi – thyAgarAja
4) ETi janmamidi – varALi- misra chApu – thyAgarAja (A)
5) lAvaNya rAma – pUrNashaDjam – rUpakam – thyAgarAja
6) vara rAga layajnulu – cencukAmbOji – Adi – thyAgarAja
7) Emi nEramu nannu – shankarAbharaNam – Adi – thyAgarAja (ANST)
8 ) parulanamATa (jAvaLi) – kApi -rUpakam – dharmapuri subbarAyar
9) karpUram nArumO – khamAs – kanDa chApu – ANDAL
10) bhArE pAnDurangA (abhang) – mAND – Adi – tukArAm
11) nI nAma rUpa mulaku (mangaLam) – saurAshTram – Adi – thyAgarAja
(Key: O=raga outline, A=raga alapana, N=neraval, S=kalpana swaram, T=taniavartanam)
I love to listen to Vid. Sangeetha Sivakumar live in concerts and am so happy that the frequency of her performances in Chennai are on the rise.
Vid. Sangeetha started her concert with the sahAnA varnam “karuNimpa“. “tuLasI daLamulacE” was sung next with neraval and kalpanA swaram at “sarasIruha punnAga …”. Next came a beautiful rendition of “vinata suta“. Even the poor audio system couldn’t mar the beautiful way in which it was sung. Bhrigas seemed to flow so easily !!!!
The first alapana of the day was that of varALi. Vid. Sangeetha touched panchamam of normal octave only after about 2 minutes. Till then she doled out delightful patterns in the lower octave and lower half of the normal octave. She built the alapana step by step. The entire alapana lasted for about 8 minutes and every second of it kept me completely interested and involved. Vid. M.A. Krishnaswamy showed good control over his instrument while playing the alapana. His alapana was also very enjoyable. Special mention must be made of Vid. Shertalai Ananthakrishnan who played very well for the song “ETi janma“. Vid. Trichy Murali followed him well.
The main raga of the day was shankarAbharaNam. The number of “aahaa“s, “sabhAsh“s & “balE“s the 13.5 min raga alapana elicited from the audience was testimony to its brilliance. Neraval and kalpana swarams were put in the kriti “Emi nEramu” at “dIna bandhuvani dEvadEvuDani“.
Taniavartanam was played for eDuppu of 1.5 beats after samam in Adi tALam (2 kaLai). It comprised the chatusra and tisra naDais. There was a misra kuraippu. It started with the usual 7 aksharam pattern played 8 times to cover 56 aksharams (=7×8) within 14 beats starting with a gap of 2 beats after samam in the first round. In the second round, Vid. Shertalai Ananthakrishnan did tisram and played a pattern of 7 aksharam 12 times (7×12=84 aksharams) within 14 beats starting with a gap of 2 beats after samam. In the third round, instead of playing the 7 aksharam pattern 12 times, he played the following in tisra gati:
3 patterns of 7 aksharam each = 21 aksharams
3 patterns of 6 aksharam each = 18 aksharams
3 patterns of 5 aksharam each = 15 aksharams
3 patterns of 4 aksharam each = 12 aksharams
3 patterns of 3 aksharam each = 9 aksharams
3 patterns of 2 aksharam each = 6 aksharams
3 patterns of 1 aksharam each = 3 aksharams
adding to a total of 84 aksharams within 14 beats, started after 2 beats from samam.
The fourth round was an exact reverse of the third one.
Then started the half avartanam rounds, first with normal chatusram (4×7=28 aksharams started 4 aksharams i.e., 1 beat after samam or mid-point of avartanam) and then with the same played in slow speed tisram (3×7=21 aksharams started 3 aksharams i.e, 1 beat after samam or mid-point of avartanam). Then came the normal 4 beats and 2 beats rounds followed by a a few avartanams of normal chatusra gati leading to mOrA and kOrvai.
Next comes my plea to the organizers. Since the artists are only allowed about 2 hours time for the concerts and are asked to finish off by 8.30PM, it will be beneficial for rasikas if the organizers at the samajam curtailed their tendency to give long speeches after the main song of the day and allowed the artists and rasikas to enjoy 2-3 additional songs. It is extremely disheartening to see speeches that tantamount to almost nil value addition being made by the organizers who are musicians themselves. It would also be helpful if the audio system were a bit better. The amplification in this series sucks big time.