Thyagaraja fest had some young but capable artistes showcasing their talent.
The three concluding days of Thyagaraja Aradhana Sangeetosavams by Vignana Samithi (Anandnagar) had relatively young, but artistes of calibre like V.R. Dileep (Thrissur) V. Sankaranarayanan (Chennai) and Panthula Rama (Visakhapatnam).
Dileep's style of rendition was more given to gamakam. His handling of raga alapana in Sriranjani (Sogasu gaana…), Asaveri (Ra ra maa inti daaka…) Mohana, Purvikalyani (Paraloka…. Manasa) and the main Sankarabharanam were quite extensive. The manodharma was tinged with feeling but the kritis fell slightly short of clarity in terms of lyrics and to that extent marred the overall effect. He introduced the 29th melakarta with melodic improvisations that gave a wholesome treatment of this fine raga. The kriti (Swara raga sudha…) however, did not rise to the heights expected. Throughout the recital, the elaborate alapana and tilting swarakalpana gave way to a mired feeling of something going wrong with the acoustics in lieu of not being able to get a hang of the kriti as such. The mridangam by Jai Bhaskar was not up to the mark though Dwaram Satyanarayana on the violin and Srinivas on the kanjira were at their best.
V. Sankaranaryanan proved his prowess in stylistic rendition with good command over the raga and excellent choice of kritis. There was a touch of sensitivity to the swaras he rendered as he forayed into musical creativity churning out patterns befitting the raga he was handling at that point of time. He had a specialised way of elongating on a syllable rendering a dimension to the kriti which set him apart from the run-of-the-mill artists. Thus Endaro mahanubhavulu… in Sri ragam was treated with the dignity it richly deserved and the neraval on Rama bhaktudaina Thyagaraju… communicated the essence of the song. Maara vai ramani… a rare kriti in melakarta Nasikabhushini was a lovely flow of melodic expertise. Bantureeti koluva… (Hamsanadam) got a further fillip even the Karaharapriya opened close on its heels with Pakkala nilabadi…. The alapana was rendered with élan giving us a full flavour of the raga. The neraval in cyclical, rhythmic pattern was well conceived while the swarakalpana spoke eloquent. However, as he cycled through the tempo, there was a lack of clarity in the swaras that was lost in the whirlwind rendition. Taniavarthanam and serve and volley by D.S.R Murthy and Nemani Somayajulu was a pleasure to watch. Kokkonda Subramanya Sarma's violin excelled. A brilliant voice and technical skill marked Panthula Rama's recital on the final day. Opening with Saadinchene o manasa… (Thyagaraja Pancharatna kriti) in Arabhi, she displayed her vidwat in neraval (‘samayaniki...'), weaving out swara patterns as she led herself into manodharma. Yentha muddo, yentha sogaso… in Bindumalini with a lovely prelude (alapana) which brought out the sweetness of the raga to the fore. Perfectly chiseled swarakalpana embellished Anuraagamu leni manasuna… (Saraswati) as also Nee daya raada Rama… (Vasantha Bhairavi-Roopaka talam), but the emotions of love and pathos were sadly missing in the rendition. The musician seemed to be engrossed in getting the sahitya and swara to a T and in the process the bhava (feeling) got submerged. Bilahari was vibrant in the alapana followed by a compelling tanam while the wordings of the Thyagaraja kriti Na jeeva dhara… were hardly decipherable with the technical elongations that had to endow the particular syllables! M.S.N Murthy on the violin gelled well with the vocalist keeping a steady flow all through. Blessed with a stupendous tone and tenor and grip over the medium, Panthula Rama generated veneration for her scholarliness but failed to pull at the heart strings.