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Impeccable mastery

G.S. Paul
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Music V.V. Subramaniam and his son V.V.S. Murari bewitched the audience in Thrissur with their artistry. G.S. Paul

S cintillating was the violin concert that V.V. Subramaniam (VVS) presented in Thrissur last week. The two-hour performance, assisted by his son V.V.S. Murari, lived up to the title that the organisers had given to it, namely ‘Grand Violin Concert.' His bewitching artistry apart, it was VVS' ability to communicate to the audience with his music that made it a memorable recital. The effortless way in which the musician performed and his apt selections elevated the aesthetics of the concert to another level. The artiste struck a rapport with his audience right from the very first notes he played. The Kalyani Adi tala varnam ‘Vanajakshi,' composed by Thiruvettiyur Thyagayya, the opening number, was well received.

If Sama raga is one that is known for its sweetness, VVS made it sweeter with a short yet vibrant delineation. The composition was Dikshitar's ‘Annapoorne Visalakshi' in Adi. The emphasis on a few select notes by sustaining them for long made it noteworthy. At the end of the composition, the musician posed a question to the audience. He asked if anyone in the audience could tell him where the raga originated from. He then gave them the reply – Kerala. He added that the raga is popularly used in Sopana Sangeetham.

It was followed by an exhaustive essaying of Panthuvarali. The much sought after Tyagaraja composition ‘Siva Siva Siva enarada' in Adi was the kriti chosen. As the artiste played on, one could hear the aesthetically coined phrases of the raga. Murari's repetitions were equally enjoyable. His long avartana was followed by VVS shifting to the lower octave, which added a totally different dimension to the number.

Enthralling exchanges

Once the swaras were taken up, the father-son duo entered into an enthralling dialogue between them. Once again VVS took the microphone to announce that this was being presented in the memory of his guru Chembai Vaidynatha Bhagavathar.

The main raga for the evening was Ritigoula, the soft, graceful notes of which appeared in quick succession. Subbaraya Sastri's ‘Janani ninuvina' in Misra Chapu was the composition. The swaras taken up in varied rhythm patterns by the main musician and reproduced by Murari was enjoyable. The ‘kanak' of the combinations was sophisticated.

Senior mridangam artiste V. Kamalakara Rao impressed the audience with the resonant vibrations of his instrument. The tani taken up along with Tripunithura Radhakrishnan on the ghatam was crisp.They also did one for the RTP in Todi that followed.

A soothing Kapi appeared in the attire of ‘Jagadoddharanana,' Purandaradasa's composition. After playing an alluring ‘Karunachyyanenthu thaamsam Krishna,' VVS hastened to add that the original composition in Sree raga was retuned by Chembai in Yadukulakamboji. However, he called it Puranirmai.

The concert organised by Sree Thyagabrahma Sangeetha Sabha concluded with a tillana in Hamsanandi.


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