Maestro Mangalampalli Balamuralikrishna regaled audience with an unprecedented three day musical bonanza.
Nestled in the majestic folds of his vocal chords, musical notes seem to swell and flow with infinite melody. One need hardly wait to have the feel of musical ecstasy as lilting notes bloom in his soft voice creating an ambience of musical grace and brilliance. Maestro Mangalampalli Balamuralikrishna's three-day fete at Visakhapatnam was an unprecedented musical bonanza for music aficionados of the city for three consecutive days. That Balamurali is a superlative genius of a rare order needs no reiteration. But to have a sumptuous feast of his myriad facets in one go is undeniably a rare experience for rasikas. Billed as first ever three-day series of concerts by the maestro in his long and eventful life, it set a shining record on the cultural front of the city, thanks to chairman Vijay Nirman and philanthropist S Vijayakumar .
The inaugural session comprised Balamuralikrishna's compositions and his ragas, while the second day was of his light music and filmy songs. On the third day it was a cascade of the compositions of different Vaggeyakaras. Titled ‘Murali Madhuri', the entire event was a heady cocktail of splendid nuances of classicism for the learned and of lilting melody for the laity.
On the first day, Balamurali commenced with his own composition Siddim dehime in raga Siddi which set the tone for the proceedings . Next was raga Mahati, a derivative of 28th Melakartha raga Harikambhoji, for Mahaneeya Madhuramoorthe, kamaneeya gaanamoorthe, a paean in praise of his redoubtable guru Parupalli Ramakrishnayya Pantulu, which the maestro rendered in a mood reflective of high reverence. He chose raga Chandrika, a derivative of raga Dhenuka, for the delineation for Neesaati neeve Ranga. With a pentatonic structure, it looked a shade closer to Hindustani Chandra kouns. In his soft voice it stood to gain a silky aesthetic glow that mesmerised the audience. Packed with subtle nuance, his detailed aalapana of raga Kalyani for Sogasu nee sommu Kalyani Ragini truly unveiled Kalyani's sogasu in all its richness. He capped the inaugural session with bubbly Tillana in raga Brindavani.
On the second day, he began with his raga Ganapathi for Gam Ganapathi Bhajeham and then Vandemaataram andi maataram in Ranjani. While raga Desakhi, a derivative of 28th Melakartha Harikambhoji, for Simhachalamuna Velasina Nrusimha sparkled with exquisite phrases in higher octave, Bruhadeeswara Mahadeva in raga Kanada and Pahi Sameera Kumara in raga Mandari, a derivative of 51 Melakartha Kamavardhini, stood out. Ganalola in praise of Lord Balaji in a scintillating ragamalika comprising Gamanasrama, Ahirbhairavi, Abhogi, Mayamalava Goula and Madhyamavati marked the close of the classical part of the session Therafter the maestro briefly presented his light music and film songs.
After a couple of private songs that eulogised the grandeur and beauty of the Telugu language , he presented his 1963 chartbuster Salalita Raaga Sudharasa Saaram from Narthanasala along with a local talent Palagummi K. Suhasini Anand. A Tamil song Chinni Kannan and popular Mouname Neebhasha O Moogamanasa from K Balachandar's film Guppedu Manasu regaled the audience in ample measure.
On the third day, it was truly a cascade of the compositions of Vaggeyakaras. Rasikas stepped into familiar territory with well-known compositions coming alive through the maestro's golden voice, holding them in a hypnotic spell for over two and half hours. He began with his own composition Mahadevasutam in raga Aarabhi and then came Gourimanohari of Muttuswamy Deekshitar in raga Gourimanohari.
Bearing a stamp of the maestro's matchless virtuosity, each piece that he presented unfolded its gorgeous facets. While raga Abheri for Nagumomu kanaleni of Thygaraja meandered through the vast musical meadows of endearing appeal, raga Sunadavinodini for Devadideva of Mysore Vasudevachari leisurely sauntered in all its majestic charms.
The devotional fervour in all its supplication embedded in Pibare Ramarasam by Sada Siva Brahmmendra softly spread devotional fragrance that enveloped the audience, while Jayadev's Ashtapadi Radhika Krishna in raga Janasammodini imbued with poignant phrases unfolded emotional contours of a sensitive mind in the pangs of estrangement. Ramaramayani anaraada of Prayaga Rangadasu in raga Sindhubhairavi besides a Tatwam of Potuluri Veerabrahmmam Emisetura Linga delighted the audience and vivacious Tillana in raga Kadanakutuhalam was the grand finale to the event.
K. Sivaprasad's whistle, R. Madhuri's veena, Satyanarayana's violin, Satyasai's morsing, M. Haribabau and Nemani Somayajulu on ghatam (on different days) and Ramanamurthy's mridangam offered a grand display of rhythmic vivacity. Vijaya Nirman Pvt Ltd in concert with Chennai-based Vipanchee and Visakhapatnam Port Trust organised the fete at Kalavani auditorium in Port Stadium.