It will not matter what time of the day you want to attend a concert. Till 4 a.m. on Thursday, music lovers in the city can walk into Government Music College in R.A. Puram and listen to vocal concerts and watch dance recitals that are being performed for 66 continuous hours.
The event, being organised as part of Chief Minister Jayalalithaa’s birthday celebrations, will see the likes of Carnatic vocalist T.M. Krishna, voco-violinist M. Chandrasekar and flautist Prapancham Balachander perform. The event would provide an opportunity for students, both present and former and, lecturers of the music college, too, to perform, said E. Gayathri, vice-chancellor, Tamil Nadu Music and Fine Arts University.
The event began on Monday with a concert by Thirupangur Muthukumarasamy and Kovilur Kalyanasundaram on the thavil and Thiruvanmiyur Balasubramaniam and Hemaraj on the Nagaswaram.
In the same neighbourhood, 66 folk artistes performed at Rukmini Arundale Arangam of the Tamil Nadu Eyal Isai Nataka Mandram. They presented karagattam, kavadiattam, kolattam, oyilattam, thappattam, kai silambattam, naiyyandi melam and folk song performances. Monday’s programme came to a close with Chennai Tamizharasu Theatres of T. Balasundaram performing ‘Sri Narasimhar’ drama.
Mandram member secretary P.S. Sachu said the programme was initiated by the artistes themselves who wanted to thank the Chief Minister for increasing their pension. “Perhaps for the first time, we organised a tour of folk artistes to Muscat last year. We are in the process of creating more opportunities for them. We are also planning a training programme for their children,” she said.
Karagattam and thavil artistes K. Kasturi and K. Kaliyamurthy, who performed at the event, said such programmes were a welcome change for their ilk. “We are jobless for six months every year. It would help artistes if the government can give us training in other crafts or trades and provide us with work for the time we are idle,” said Mr. Kaliyamurthy.