Aswathy Tirunal Rama Varma's concert in Ramamangalam did justice to the music and the audience.

Aswathy Tirunal Rama Varma's Carnatic vocal concert at Ramamangalam, near Kochi, was informative and entertaining. During the recital, he kept communicating with his listeners through his music as well as through brief explanations about the kritis.

Opening with a dignified Ata tala varnam in Bhairavi, he moved on to ‘Gajavadana pahi,' a composition by M.D.Ramanathan in Hamsadhwani. The piece was filled with kalpana swaras that enhanced the aesthetics of the rendition. The highly energetic piece was made all the more brilliant by the able support of Avaneeswaram Vinu and G. Babu on the violin and the mridangam respectively.

‘Entharo Mahanubhavalu,' the famous composition by Tyagaraja in Sreeragam, extolling Shadkala Govinda Marar, had a neat and clear rendering, capturing the full spirit of the song. The alluring piece was packed with bhava and the exposition of the swaras and the style of alapana enthralled the audience. The excellent accompaniment accentuated the remarkable rendition of the kriti.

It was followed by a Muthuswami Dikshitar composition – ‘Annapoorne visalakshi' in Sama raga. It was an outstanding performance when the vocalist moved though the subtleties of laya.

Rama Varma brought a new vigour and fervour to the concert with the rendering of a rare composition by his guru, Balamuralikrishna. It was ‘Marathaka simhasana' in the raga Simhendramadhyamam. Endowed with a rich manodharma, the vocalist handled the main piece admirably. The taniavartanam for the piece was remarkable as it built up a variety of rhythmic patterns in different steps.

Another composition that captured the rasikas' interest was ‘Aliveni Enthucheivu,' composed by Swati Tirunal in Kurinji.

Perfect bhava

Rama Varma, a descendant of the royal musician, made it enviably soothing with his unique alapana. The rendition was a beautiful blend of perfection and bhava. It was followed by two bhajans – ‘Sree Ramanamam,' a composition by Bhadrachala Ramadasa and ‘Ramarama,' a composition by Prayaga Rangadasa.

Both of them were commendable as they were drenched in devotion. He concluded the two-hour concert with a Thillana in Kunthalavarali and a mangalam. It was a fulfilling evening for music buffs on account of the superb performance that did justice to the music and the audience.

The recital was organised by Shadkala Govinda Marar Smaraka Kalasamity, Ramamangalam, to honour Karevattedath Narayana Marar and Tripunithura Krishnadas, winners of the Pallavoor Appumarar Vadya Puraskaram.