Savita Narasimhan’s music had all the ingredients of classicism. A crystal clear voice well trained to give substance to her refined musical instincts ensured the high-quality performance of Savita Narasimhan at Naada Inbam. She presented herself as one who turned her back on the dull periphery of formula concert standard.
In the field of alapanas of ragas sensitive manodharama with sancharas marked by a sense of proportion played a central constructive role in framing a lively concert.
Fresh and appealing
In the matter of rendering kirtanas she breathed freshness marked by high aspirations. The lyrical beauties of the sahityas were stressed with an intermingling of depth and appeal. In a way Savita’s music had all the ingredients of classicism.
While still adhering to accepted standards her involvement in preserving them was quite evident. The Ata tala Kalyani varnam (‘Vanajakshi’) followed by the kirtanas ‘Inta Paraaka’ (Mayamalavagowla) and ‘Vinarada Naa Manavi’ (Devagandhari) were rendered with great exhilaration to raise hopes.
With all the good aspects of her equipment, she failed to realise the vital role of monumental kirtana in a major raga at the mid-stage to take her recital to top-class. ‘Maa Ramanan’ (Hindolam with an alapana) ‘Paalintuvo Paalimpavo’ (Kantamani) or ‘Budhamasrayami’ (Nattakurunji with an alapana) were not items that could provide the weight that her recital very much needed. No doubt, her alapana exercise of the two ragas was replete with musical fervour. No musician can afford to be indifferent to this feature that alone gives vital strength to a concert.
The kutcheri gained liveliness again as she began the Dhanyasi alapana for a Ragam, Tanam and Pallavi. The vinyasa was not a series of symmetrically arranged sancharas. The felicity of the flow of her voice at this stage induced her to scan the landscape of Dhanyasi to lay a discernible lay-out framed around moorchana centres. The raga’s imagery was at once graphic. The first few movements were in the nature of a search for full expression of throbbing musical impulses.
The violin accompanist was Padma Shankar. In her solo versions she paid all attention to a methodical build-up of ragas. Her tutelage stood her in good stead to package the sancharas with crispness. The mridangam artist was Kallidaikurichi Sivakumar. Delightful percussive art spread over his play while accompanying kirtanas. In his thani he gave distinguished contours to rhythmic idioms. He invoked specific patterns, precise and penetratingly vibrant. At no time in the whole kutcheri was his sound loud, a rare quality to be seen to-day.