Known for her innovative techniques Kanyakumari recently presented a new set of seven ragas.

A. Kanyakumari presented her innovation of seven new ragas to the full house of eager Carnatic aficionados in her morning lecture demonstration at The Music Academy.

Kanyakumari is known for her creative pursuits and innovative techniques and from time to time she keeps demonstrating them also. This is a different ball game, indeed, as she is

trying to introduce a new line of seven ragas, derivatives from the melakarta ragas. She, being an ardent devotee of Tirupati, the holy shrine, christened the ragas with the names of the seven hills. The programme was crisp and she presented the name, arohanam and avarohanam of the ragas by supporting each raga with a composition of Annamacharya, absolutely matching with the names and their genesis.

The first one was Seshadri, closely resembling Madhuvanti with a slender difference, tuned to the kriti ‘Emani Talasavachu.’ Neeladri was the second, derived from the melakarta Jhankaradhwani, which bore the shades of Sivaranjani (‘Nadige Nadugottha’). Chakravaham was the Janaka raga of Kanyakumari’s Garudadri, with tinges of Chakravaham and Nagaswaravali (‘Kalasapuramu’). Anjanadri, an offshoot of 72 mela raga Rasikapriya with rishabam only the descend but eschewing dhaivatam.

‘Kalithoshamulala’ was set to tune in this raga. Vrushabadri had been sliced from Kanakangi (‘Saranam Navibeeshanu’). For Narayanadri (‘Meluledu Deenuledu’) Dheera Sankarabharanam was the origin. Venkatadri was the corollary of Jhankaradhwani once again. (‘Pramayathou Undathae’).

The kritis were rendered meticulously by her student Thejasvi to the accompaniment of Kanyakumari and another student Rajiv on the violin. On the discussion part, senior musician P.S. Narayanaswami lauded the efforts and so did P. Vasanthakumar, who also felt how her mentor MLV would have expressed her happiness and sung those kritis with passion. However, Dr Ramanathan, musicologist, expressed his reservations on the range of these new found ragas and also the great difference between establishing a raga and ushering in a new one.

Sudha Raghunathan extended her appreciation and also evinced interest to know the ‘user friendly’ nature of these melodies for expansion and other creative improvisations in the concert platform.