Chaitra Sairam’s pleasing voice worked out many subtleties in singing
Chaitra Sairam, a young artiste of commitment, sang under the auspices of Sri Krishnamurthipuram Rama Mandira. Soft intonations and scholarly movements characterised her melodious singing. The resilient and pleasing voice energetically modulated in the madhya sthayi than in the taara sthayi in which it was relatively delicate. An appropriate laya in Patnam’s varna, “Eranapai” (Todi), embodying deep and compact akaaras, provided her the advantage of developing other presentations on a firm footing. In Bilahari (Dikshitar’s “Ekadantam Bhajeham”), she could have creatively demonstrated the subtle curves around dhaivatha and kaishiki nishadha to elicit the beauty of Bilahari.
Diffidence persisted until she reached “Rama Rama Gunaseema” (Simhendra Madhyama - Swathy Thirunal); now she was all set to give the best of her learning. Imaginatively drawn alapana that flowed spontaneously and was built on subtle articulations, evolved as it moved on. Her sense of shruthi consistently imparted melody to her extempore.
A scholarly neraval at “Munimanasa” and fluent passages of swarakalpana established the artiste as having technical competence supporting total involvement. All along, Aditi (violinist) ideally followed the lead artiste’s manodharma. Thyagaraja’s “O Rangashayi” in Kamboji was the main number. Thani avarthana gave full scope for Radhesh (mridanga) to exhibit his expertise - with beats soft and crisp.
Other important inclusions: Thyagaraja’s “Cherarava” (Rithigaula), “Shashivadana” (Chandrajyothi) and “Anupama Gunambudhi” (Athana), Papanasham Sivan’s Tamil composition, Purandaradasa’s “Ramakrishnaru Manege” and a tillana.
Abhishek Raghuram captured the audience with his immense potential and genuine enthusiasm at Shri Krishna Gaana Sabha. Mysore M. Nagaraj, (violin), B. Shashishankar (mridanga) and Shashishankar (ghata) accompanied the young artiste. The pleasant voice perfectly merged with the shruthi and at once drew everyone’s attention. Further, the voice was so flexible that it suited the various movements. Nevertheless, he was not as comfortable in the taara as he was in the mandra sthayi.
The concert commenced with Thiruvottiyur Thyagayya’s varna, “Inthamodi” (Saranga) continuing into Dikshitar’s “Vaathapi Ganapathim” (Hamsadhwani). In the latter presentation, tangled interludes, squeezed into the movements, providing a tenable clue to assess the overall outcome: complexities in place of simple and serene experiences.
Also, consider Dikshitar’s “Govardhana Girisham” (Hindola).
He expanded the raga providing it with alluring pauses at octave. The bhirkas likened to those characteristic of Hindustani music commanded applauses. Yet, there was no consistency in maintaining a uniform melodic tempo: jerky and rapid articulations disturbed the joyous revelling in the charming world of Hindola.
The sangathis needed simple touches to reinforce the spirit of the lyrics. The swaraprastara shot into the madhya laya without being methodically introduced through slower passages (considering the raga and the lyrics) - an approach common in rhythm-oriented instances.
Similarly, Purandaradasa’s “Nambikettavarillavo” (Kalyani) too had to face such vicissitudes (in the light of the meaning of the text).
“Hariya Ninnanu Olisalu” (Bhairavi-Hindusthani-emotive), “Smarasamrochita” (Ashtapadi - Sanskrit lyrics warranted clarity) and a tillana (Khamach) were the other inclusions.V. NAGARAJ