Fusion Five artists rendered kritis based on ragas with five notes and dealt with five aspects of music in ‘Panchamukhi,’ a music programme led by violin maestro V.V.S. Murari.

The weekly cultural programme, ‘Anbai Solla Azhagaana Vazhi’, organised by Sri Krishna Sweets in Coimbatore, featured the fusion music programme ‘Panchamukhi’, conceptualised and presented by VVS Murari, son and disciple of violin maestro V.V. Subramaniam. Murari, who has an enviable musical lineage dating back to Muthuswami Dikshitar, brought together gifted artists, Poovalur Sriji (mridangam), Chandra Sekhara Sharma (ghatam),  Muralikrishna (drums) and Shankar (keyboard), adding his own genius to it.

The name ‘Panchamukhi’ was fully justified as the five artists presented compositions based on ragas with five notes and dealt with five aspects of music (classical, orchestral, light, folk and film).

Spirited performance

Their spirited performance began with ‘Colours,’ a special composition in Varamu, followed by ‘Sobillu Sapthaswara’ in Jaganmohini. After a piece by Mozart, Murari depicted Nalinakanti, bringing out her graceful beauty. Muralikrishna’s special effects made it sound like the real flow of a musical river. In Tyagaraja’s ‘Manavyalakincharaadhate’, rhythmic phrases fused seamlessly with melodious fireworks as they traversed the range from Carnatic to Western. Raga Revathi made her appearance soon after — there was a lovely elaboration of the raga and the ragamalika swaras glided smoothly.

The percussionists then took the stage. The spectacular show began with Chandra Sekhara Sharma’s nimble fingers weaving fast and delightful sound patterns on the ghatam. Murali Krishnan created magic with his impressive konnakkol and his wizardry over different instruments, painting a kaleidoscope of sounds. Veteran Poovalur Sriji’s firm, swift and imaginative handling of the mridangam was delightful. When all the three played together, it was a dance of pure rhythm. And to think that all this was done without any rehearsal!

The lighter session was dominated by the film songs of Ilaiyaraaja and A.R. Rahman. ‘Thendral Vandhu Ennai Thodum,’ ‘Andhi Mazhai Pozhigirathu,’ ‘Enna Thavam Seidhanai’ and ‘Thamizhaa, Thamizhaa’ were thoroughly enjoyable and most of the listeners hummed along.

Murari sang a devout Mira Bhajan, ‘Hari Bin Saavan Kyon Aaye,’ describing Mira’s longing for her Lord — ‘Why is it raining when Hari has not yet made his appearance? My thirsty eyes will not be quenched unless I see Hari. My ears pine for the notes from his flute’.

Girija Hariharan sang a perky folk song, ‘Aandi Vandhaandi’ that narrated the story of Murugan’s wedding with Valli. The programme concluded with Harikesanallur Muthaiah Bhagavatar’s English note and ‘Raghupathi Raghava.’