If Subhasri's presentation had rationed brighas, Ramani's was packed with lengthy sancharas.
Thanks to the excellent traffic arrangement, one was able to reach Bala Mandir German Hall, T. Nagar in time for the function in honour of GNB that included a speech sandwiched between two concerts. It was held under the auspices of the GNB Centenary Celebrations Committee and The Indian Fine Arts Society on Sunday last.
Subhasri, daughter of noted musician couple Charumathi Ramachandran and Trichur V. Ramachandran, presented an enjoyable concert. Subhasri's cool and bright recital was a contrast to the humid and cloudy weather outside. Her delineation of Mohanam ('Raa Raa'-Adi-Mysore Vasudevachar) with rationed brigas was very satisfying.
The brief Khamas that preceded it was a clear indication of her growing self confidence. 'Karpooram Naarumo' (Nachiyar Tirumozhi) was neatly rendered. She maintained the tempo in Kiravani ('Nee Charanmabhujamunu'-Adi-GNB), painting it vividly with akhara phrases that landed perfectly. That she did not dwell too much on the arithmetics of swara was another aspect that lifted the concert to an enjoyable level. Meera Sivaramakrishnan (violin), however, was off colour with her slippery playing. Seasoned campaigner Kallidaikurichi Sivakumar (mridangam) and H.Sivaramakrishnan (ghatam) gave the necessary support to uplift the concert while V.V.S Manian (ganjira) joined them effectively. Overall, this lady is bound to climb up the success ladder, if this approach is sustained.
Veteran N. Ramani took the stage after the speech. It was a revelation when he announced that though trained by his guru T.R. Mahalingam, he had shaped his style following that of GNB.
'Vara Vallabha' (Hamsadhwani-Adi-GNB) was an enjoyable start followed by a Saraswathi ('Saraswathi Namosthute'-Rupakam-GNB) that Ramani packed with haunting, lengthy sancharas.
Shades of GNB's briga-oriented sangathis came in now and then. M.A. Sundareswaran (violin) whose musical maturity has grown by leaps and bounds, gave a brilliant reply.
Sahana was yet another demonstration of class by the Ramani-MAS combination. 'Eevasudha' (Adi-Tyagaraja) was a shade faster than usual. Classicism came to the fore, when the 'nadha yogi' in Ramani presented Thodi ('Thamasam Yaen Swami'-Adi-Sivan) with an array of well measured mellifluous phrases. MAS was a close second.
Vellore Ramabhadran's mridangam was off sruti for most part of the concert.
E.M. Subramaniam was on the ghatam. Sekar of M.S. Kumar Audios deserves special mention for the judicious sound balancing that made listening, a pleasurable experience.