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Updated: September 29, 2011 17:37 IST

In a meditative mood

JYOTI NAIR
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ACCOMPLISHED ARTIST: Uday Bhawalkar
ACCOMPLISHED ARTIST: Uday Bhawalkar

Dhrupad is one of the oldest forms of Hindustani music. It first evolved during the Medieval period at the court of Raja Man Singh Tomar in Gwalior. Then it spread and flourished in the courts of the Mughals, where it was referred to as the Darbari dhrupad. Since then, this style has been adopted for stage concerts while the haveli dhrupad style continues to be performed at temples.

Amid the beautiful setting of Amethyst rose the strains of Miyan ki Todi, in the voice of Udal Bhawalkar. He presented the Prabandha, a fixed composition that begins and ends in madhya laya. The performance was divided into four parts -- an initial alap, given to the exposition of the scale (called udagraha); second, a fixed-form section, which made the poem (called dhruvapada), third, a concluding portion called the abhoga and finally, the aalap. It evoked emotions of bhakti and pathos.

Naat alap was delivered in meends; the singer travelled from mandra to madhya in an unbroken line of poetic manifestation. After a long meditative aalap, Uday performed ‘Kaun Bharam Bhoole,’ in vilambit. After elaborating the words in bolaalaps, traversing the three octaves and lacing the piece with divgan and tivgan, he presented yet another composition, ‘Todi Ragani Alapan Gavat.’ This, he embellished with bolaalaps, bol bants, and bol banaavs. Finally, this led to a composition in dhrut in jhaptaal of ten beats, ‘Tero Valambtaab’ a traditional bandish of Tansen.

An accomplished artist who follows the tradition of the Dagar brothers, Uday showcased various types of tihais and the banis (the Dagari is the most pronounced in his rendition). Accompanying him on the pakhawaj was Pratap.


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