Despite a few hiccups, Vani Ramamurthy came good in her concert in Kochi.
Vani Ramamurthy's concert at Changampuzha Park in Kochi demonstrated her attempt to highlight weighty ragas and explore different aspects of improvisation with some amount of success.
A disciple of Delhi Sundarrajan and Ranjani–Gayathri, Vani started the concert with a Pantuvarali varnam tagged on to ‘Gajavadana’ in Sreeranjani raga that had swara korvais in sarva laghu. This pattern was further evinced in her swara rendition of Mayamalavagowla for ‘Devadeva kalayamithe’.
A free style niraval and swaras were replicated ably by Idappally Ajith Kumar on the violin and the vocalist ended the feat with a muktaippu that was crafted creatively. She brought in some old world charm by including ‘Hecharika rara’, the utsava sampradaya kriti in Yadukula Kamboji.
The vocalist was seen struggling to hit the low notes in her alapana of Arabhi raga. This was seen in other points of the concert with discrepancies in pitching. The clear enunciation of lyrics of ‘Nadasudharasam bilanu’ was noteworthy.
A composition of Arunachala Kavi, ‘Arivar yaar unnai’, was soaked in pathos and conveyed the nuances of Mukhari raga. In her elaboration of the main raga Todi, Vani headed straight to panchama and established the scale. Her alapana was rather tame in parts but Ajith succeeded in capturing the nuances well.
Her full-throated singing is a plus but a few modulations could have really heightened the emotive impact. ‘Koluvamaragatha kodandapani’ was well supported by Balakrishna Kamath on the mridangam and Tripunithura Kannan on the ghatam and they played the first half of the taniavarthanam with intricate jathis and permutations.
The mohra was novel and rightly paced. Vani launched into an improvisation of Dharmavathi raga which was carried off delectably. A pallavi in chaturashrajathi triputa had free style as well as niraval in trikalam. However, in the last phase of the pallavi and in the beginning of the swara segment, the vocalist lost her grip. She moved to kalpanaswaras in Reethigowla and Hamsadhwani.
‘Sagarashayana vibho’, M.D. Ramanathan’s soulful kriti in Bageshree, and ‘Manadhir Kugandhadu Murugan Roopam’ in Sindhu Bhairavi raga were the concluding pieces.
The programme was organised by Edappally Sangeetha Sadas and Changampuzha Samskarika Kendram, Edappally.