O.S. Thyagarajan’s perfect sruti and diction enhanced the musicality of his recital in Palakkad.

It is always a rewarding experience to listen to O.S. Thyagarajan’s music. His concert at The Palghat Fine Arts Society, Tharekkad, was no different. Although he has a wide repertoire of kritis by several composers, he has a passion for Tyagaraja kritis and enjoys singing them.

Most of the pieces rendered at the concert in Tharekkad were some of the best compositions by the saint composer. Music aficionados were treated to a feast of sudha sangeetham marked by perfect sruti and diction at the concert as the OST stamp was clearly visible in all his renditions.

He began majestically with ‘Saadhinchene’, the Pancharatna kriti of Tyagaraja in Arabi, and followed it up with brisk renditions of ‘Paritaapamugani’ (Manohari) and ‘Teliyaleru rama’ (Dhenuka), both Tyagaraja compositions.

His expansive alapana of Kharaharapriya was one of the best portrayals of the raga heard in recent times. He gradually built up a superb edifice of the raga, traversing effortlessly in all the octaves. It was a spontaneous flow of sangatis all the way, touching each and every swara of the raga. Choosing Tyagaraja’s ‘Rama neesamaana evaru’, in which the saint composer asks Rama “Who is there equal to you?”, OST made intelligent manoeuvres in the niraval and kalpanaswaras at the charanam ‘Paluki paluki’.

As a contrast, he immediately presented a brief but sweet sketch of Varali, suffixed with the kriti ‘Aetijanmamidhi’ of Tyagaraja; the raga bhava came alive in the energetic niraval and swaprastharas. After a fast ‘Ammaraavamma’ (Kalyani, Tyagaraja), the vocalist rendered a scholarly delineation of Surutti. The glides and curves leading to the shadjam and the sancharas in the upper octave were remarkable.

The Tyagaraja kriti ‘Geetaarthamu’ in praise of Lord Anjaneya, rendered at a leisurely pace with deep bhava, offered visranthi to the listeners. The slow and fast conjunctions in the swara patterns were marvellous.

Syama Sastri’s Tamil kriti ‘Tharunam Idamma’ in Gaulipantu and Swami Surajananda’s ‘Rangam Sri Rangam’ in Kambodhi were sedate renditions. The famous song ‘Kaana Vendaamo’ (Sriranjani – Papanasam Sivan) was sung with piety. The concert was wrapped up with the once popular jaavali of Dharmapuri Subbaraya Iyer – ‘Marubaari thaala’ in Khamas.

Mullaivasal G. Chandramouli (violin) revealed the art of accompaniment through his superb display. He produced attractive sancharas in his melodious elucidations of Kharaharapriya and Surutti. Umayalpuram Mali (mridangam) and Perukavu Sudheer (ghatam) shared equal honours in their spirited percussion support. The special feature of their tani in Adi tala was their playing in kandha gathi in the initial stage and playing the mohra korvai in thisra gathi.