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Joy, sheer joy!

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JITENDRA PRATAP

Krishna Birdi's soft and melodious voice ensured her success at the India Habitat Centre the other day.

Krishna Birdi (Samaddar) is a senior vocalist of Delhi. She taught music for 24 years at a leading school for girls in Delhi. Earlier she worked as an announcer/scriptwriter in the External Services Division of All India Radio. Born into a musically talented family, Krishna obtained her Masters degree in music from Delhi University's Faculty of Music and Arts where she had the good opportunity of learning music under veteran artistes and musicologists, including the late Professor Chandra Shekhar Pant, Dr. Sumati Mutatkar and many others belonging to different schools of music. Later, she continued to learn under the late guru Vasant Thakar at the Gandharva Mahavidyalaya, New Delhi. She is now studying under Lakshman Krishnarao Pandit of the Gwalior gharana. Her recent recital in the HCL Concert Series at the India Habitat Centre was well received for her neat and melodious singing. She commenced her recital in the night time raga Bihag, which she erroneously announced as an evening raga. This reminded one of the sitar maestro Pandit Ravi Shankar commencing his early evening recital several years ago at the Taj Palace Hotel in Delhi by playing the late midnight raga Jaijaivanti and mentioning it as an evening raga.Such erroneous statements should be avoided since these would mislead the students and the common listeners of classical music.

Pleasing Bihag

Krishna gave a pleasing handling to the well-known khayal in raga Bihag "Ho maa dhan dhan re" set to the 12-beat slow time cycle of Ek tala. Her deployments in alap, badhat, behelawa and taans were well proportioned and tuneful. Her soft and melodious voice fell soothingly on the ears. The fast tempo Teen tala piece of Shah Sadarang, "Balam re" was laced with well-conceived variations. Krishna made a good switchover to raga Bageshwari with a well-known composition, "Goond laao ri malaniyaan" in madhya Teen tala. An adequate deployment of gamakas would have enhanced its melodic format. The next song in the same raga but at a faster tempo "Begi begi aavo" delighted for her liltingly executed variations. Before concluding her recital with a soulful rendering of a bhajan of Sant Kabirdas, she sang an Atul Prasad Sen song in Bengali. Krishna had accompaniment on the harmonium by Mehmood Dholpuri and on the tabla by Sukant Bajpai.


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