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Creator of classics
Globally, his fame ranks with that of Akira Kurosawa and Ken Mizoguchi. Evolving his own style, Japanese filmmaker Yasujiro Ozu, whose birth centenary was celebrated on December 12, 2003, made celluloid poems of power and beauty, says RANDOR GUY.

On the making of an epic drama
Capturing 19th century Japanese vistas in New Plymouth, New Zealand, is all about natural aesthetics, claims Director Edward Zwick. The production scale of "The Last Samurai" was huge and even took the shape of a military event.

Variety fare for Pongal
FIVE FILMS are slated for release on Pongal day — "Virumaandi", "Engal Anna", "Jai", "Pudhukkotailirunthu Saravanan" and "Kovil". But one of these may hit the theatres a little early. The much talked about film, Kamal Hassan's ...
All about realising dreams
"Kanavu Mei Padavendum", directed by Janaki Viswanathan along with Jayaram as the co-director, is in its final stages of production. It is a poignant tale about one's faith in mankind and the tenacity to transcend the odds in life, writes CHITRA MAHESH.

Film Review

  • "The Last Samurai"


    Thirty years and going strong
    SHE'S A perfect foil to her garrulous husband whose complete ease on stage has been the winning stroke of many a Musiano show. While Uma Ramanan strikes an almost statuesque pose with the mike even as she mesmerises listeners with her ...


    Soaked in aesthetics
    AGE DOES not wither nor constant listening stale the glorious music of T. N. Krishnan. A great violinist that he is, he gets completely absorbed in the aesthetic aura of a raga or kirtana and for him nadopasana implies the discipline of santham ...
    Rich imaginative skills
    T .V. Sankaranarayanan lived up to his reputation as an outstanding vocalist, with extraordinary imaginative skills in singing sweet swara passages filled with variegated laya patterns, which gush forth as a deluge, following the model of his ...
    Impeccable and moving
    "NYAYAMA MEENAKSHAMMA" the question followed by Syama Sastri's plea for grace from his beloved mother goddess in an impeccably classical Manji was a high point in Sanjay Subrahmanyam's recital at the Narada Gana Sabha. The singer's anupallavi ...
    Sanskrit erudition of Tyagaraja
    SENIOR VIDHUSHI R. Vedavalli gave an outstanding and enlightening lecture demonstration for IFAS on the subject `Sanskrit Compositions of Saint Tyagaraja.' She pointed out that during Tyagaraja's time, Sanskrit occupied an important place. ...
    Brief spell of swaras
    SARANYA KRISHNAN began her afternoon concert with the Kamboji raga padavarnam and followed it up with "Sri Mahaganapathi" in Gowla. "Narasimhamamava" in Arabhi was rendered well with a brief spell of swarams for the pallavi. Her delineation of ...
    Fitting tribute to a great vidwan
    IT WAS a colourful, unique function organised by Sri Krishna Gana Sabha, which whilst celebrating its Swarna Jayanti, also took the opportunity to felicitate the violin maestro Lalgudi G. Jayaraman for his remarkable contribution to the cause of ...
    Simple and sweet
    THE CONCERT of T. K. Chandrasekar for KFA at the Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan Hall at the noon hour of December 14, 2003 can be described succinctly as short, simple and sweet. Melody seemed to have been his guiding motto. He made a judicious ...
    Music course
    BRHADDHVANI, A non-profit institution, aims to bridge the gap between the gurukula and the institutional method of teaching and to encompass the practical, theoretical and cross-cultural aspects of music. (; ...
    In pure Carnatic style
    WHILE RENDERING alapanas Trichur Brothers (Sri Krishna Mohan and Ramkumar Mohan) adopt the Hindustani Ustad style. While one is singing one avarthanam of the alapana, the other will be humming the sruti and takes over the second round and vice ...
    Individuality maintained
    B. V. BALASAYEE (flute) and A. Durgaprasad (gottuvadhyam) presented a fluent and harmonious instrumental duet, while simultaneously projecting the individuality of their instruments. The tone of the flute was especially soothing. While ...
    It's a mixed bag from abroad
    LIGHT VOICE, neutral delivery and racy raga flow can impress only for a while. How long can one keep singing just in the periphery? Shankar Ramani (U.S.) was doing that; he was more tentative in communication than affirmative. ``Era napai" Todi ...
    The flute in melodious command
    IT WAS a full bench concert — S. Shashank's flute was surrounded by redoubtable warriors on the violin (Mysore Manjunath), mridangam (P.Satish Kumar), ghatam (Vaikom Gopalakrishnan), and morsing (Mangalore Gururaj). The most surprising ...
    Full-throated routine fare
    T. V. Sankaranarayanan sang all the raga alapanas and kritis full-throated and kept the volume of mikes also high. TVS should show some sympathy to his rasikas, so that they could enjoy his music, without any auditory ...
    Enjoyable recitals
    UTTARA SATAGOPAN'S rendition of songs and kalpanaswaras was enjoyable. In raga alapana, she would need more practice to make the exercise elegant. Kalyani was the main raga and Thyagaraja's "Etaavunaraa" was sung well with neraval and swara ...
    Facets of music demonstrated
    M. S. ANANTHARAMAN, octogenarian maestro presented a lecture demonstration on violin techniques. His father, Parur Sundaram Iyer, was a trendsetter and a pioneer in what is today known as the Parur Style of playing violin. Anantharaman spoke at ...
    Scintillating swaras
    WHETHER IT was the amplification system that was the villain or the artiste himself wanted to give more power to his vocal chord, the booming sound that emanated occasionally was hardly music to the ears of even the hardiest admirer of Madurai ...
    Concerts of quality
    SUGUNA PURUSHOTHAMAN in her concert at the Music Academy succinctly conveyed her strict adherence to the bhava-laden bani of the Musiri tradition. Her involved rendering of Subbaraya Sastri's "Venkatasaila Vihara" in Hamirkalyani had the quality ...
    Gifted with a powerful voice
    THE HINDUSTANI classical series jointly organised by Hamsadhwani and the Amir Khusro Sangit Academy started on January 4 with Mala Ramadurai's opening performance. An artiste from Mumbai, originally hailing from Chennai, Mala has been learning ...
    When the two streams mingled
    UNDER THE auspices of Viswa Kala Sangama, violinist Kanyakumari, a recipient of Sangeet Natak Academy Award and Asthana awardee, sitar maestro Pt. Janardan presented a jugalbandi in violin and sitar. The concert was a fully calibrated musical and ...
    Youth with potential
    SALEM SRIRAM has a deep, mature and mellow voice, which he puts to good use in his full-throated singing. He has a fine training in the kritis, and his style of rendering free sancharas in alapana and niraval speak not only of good training but ...


    Vivacious artiste
    THERE WAS not a dull moment in the Bharatanatyam recital of Alarmel Valli at the Narada Gana Sabha. This internationally famous dancer has represented India at various prestigious cultural forums and impressed audiences. She has intelligently ...
    Energy makes it different
    ADHERENCE TO correct postures and an enviable level of energy marked Hema Sripal's recital for the Nungambakkam Cultural Academy on January 2. It is not easy to distinguish oneself in a city that abounds with dancers. Also when many of them stick ...
    Marked by vitality
    IF VYJAYANTHIMALA Bali is able to maintain a busy schedule and perform with boundless energy, it is owing to an indomitable spirit and discipline that have seen her through the roles of dancer, actress, politician, and back to dancer with her ...
    A fresh experience
    ``BUDDHAVATARA," a dance drama was presented by Mumbai and Singapore based Kanaka Sabha Performing Arts Centre in association with The Lumbini Arts Society of Ottawa, Canada and the SIFAS Performing Arts Company Singapore. Scripted and scored ...
    Gamut of colourful images
    AN ARTISTE with a penchant for entertainment, sense of humour and fan following, Shobana's passion for Bharatanatyam is buttressed by an enviable stage presence, good technique, an exceptional feel for laya and a keen mind. That she is no mean ...
    Skilful performer
    UNDER THE shades of a great banyan tree, there came up a greater banyan tree, which was christened as Kalakshetra. This institution has produced and continues to produce fine artistes, both dancers and musicians. One among them is Ananda Shankar ...
    Challenges of teaching dance
    THE NATYA Kala Conference provided fleeting insights into the then and now of dance and music teaching. Vidya Rao recaptured, with passion, the changed context today, as compared to the pre-twentieth century days when teaching by women and Bais, ...
    Classics re-visited
    THERE WAS a good crowd at Bharat Kalachar for the premier of ``Celluloid Classics" and they were not disappointed by dancers Radhika, Shobana and Gayathri and their students, who had hand-picked the `classics' from Tamil films to present with ...
    Repertoire of varied techniques
    NIRMALA SESHADRI'S latest production, `Then and Now — Personal and Artistic Reflections' presented at the Krishna Gana Sabha was a solo broken up into a margam part and a `contemplative' one, the first in performance, and the other set ...
    Thematic Bharatanatyam
    LAKSHMI PARTHASARATHY Athreya, disciple of Chitra Visweswaran, will present a thematic Bharatanatyam recital, `Kodai Azhwar' on January 9, at Narada Gana Sabha, at 5.45 p.m. Text guidance is by U. Ve. Velukkudi Krishnan and music is composed and ...


    Hard-hitting and hilarious
    The preview of "Python Hyss...teria" proved that Evam has kept its promise, says ELIZABETH ROY. Catch them at the Sivagami Pethachi Auditorium from Jan. 14 to 18.


    Festival at Tirumala
    THE `THANNEER Amudu' festival will be held at the Sri Venkateswara temple, Tirumala, on January 16, the last day of the Adhyayana Utsavam. The festival is being held to perpetuate the memory of Srisailapoorna (Tirumala Nambi), whose love for Lord ...
    Bhagwati Jagran
    SRI VAISHNO Mata Bhakti Mandal is conducting its 5th `Maa Bhagwati Jagran' on January 10 from 10 p.m. onwards. The venue will be Punjab Association, 170-172, Peters Road. ...
    Radha Kalyanam
    SRI RAM Samaj, Ayodhya Aswamedha Maha Mandapam, West Mambalam, (Ph: 24893077; 24716246) has organised Radha Kalyana Mahotsavam on January 10 and 11, by Erode Rajamani Bhagavathar. At Nanganallur Sri Siddhi ...


    Yoga classes
    MYLAI SKY Trust will organise a 12-day course in simplified physical exercise, Kayakalpa, Kundalini Yoga, meditation and personality development from Jan. 11 to 23, between 6.30 p.m. and 8.30 p.m. For details, call 2493 ...


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