The Hindu's Page 2 coverage signs off on January 2, 2012. Here are some impressions from emiment personalities in the world of arts...
V.P. Dhananjayan (Bharatanatyam exponent): This year, The Hindu's special page on the Music Season covered various subjects. The articles by eminent persons on different subjects, such as arts education, were commendable. The reviews were refreshing with straight forward opinions. 'Today's Pick' is a welcome column and acts as a useful guide to art enthusiasts coming to Chennai, especially for the Season. I enjoyed the cartoons, which were communicative and humorous. It will be interesting to include a random pick of audience reaction at concert halls, for both positive and negative feedback.
Bombay Jayashri (Vocalist): The Hindu looked refreshing this year. Its sharper coverage on Page 2 made an impression. The pick of the day was nice too. I would love it if TheHindu heralded the magnitude of the festival and celebrated its many dimensions, looking more into aesthetic layouts and thereby reflecting the true spirit of the fest.
Seetha Ravi (Journalist): It has been a Music Season of some dare-devilry, much deliberation and mostly heartening adherence to chaste tradition. Among the highlights, pride of place should go to the Page 2 reviews of The Hindu. Honest, eminently readable and technically sound, they have become benchmarks for not only aspiring critics, but also for established ones who have been tied down by a conventionally tentative approach. May this spirit spread over to all the pages of The Hindu to assess all artistes through the year.
R. Sundar (Secretary, Hamsadhwani): The nuanced criticism as part of TheHindu's coverage was an effort to reach out to artistes to improve their skills and to highlight noteworthy features of their presentation. Perhaps, a few reviews on dance would have made the coverage complete. The Hindu should also keep track of promising youngsters who miss coverage and present a perspective on their progress at least once a month. Articles on centenarians — Madurai Mani Iyer, T. Brinda and Palghat Mani Iyer — written by scholarly musicians, echoed the views of many admirers. The Sabhas in Chennai have played a crucial role in promoting art and culture and in bringing together art lovers and artistes. The media giving space for it is heartening.
Malavika Sarukkai (Dancer): The Hindu has made a commendable effort in covering the Season. The new positioning and highlighting of programmes was useful, given it is the 'mad Chennai Season'. A suggestion: To raise the bar on critical thinking on dance, it would be useful for The Hindu to commission serious articles from artistes on their vision, intellectual perspective, influences and technique. This will certainly help reinforce the fact that dance is not ‘ rendered' but 'created'.