EVENT Hamsadhwani’s Hindustani festival was aurally satisfying. V.V. Ramani

There was a time when Hindustani music lovers had to wait for the December Season to listen to maestros of that genre. Now, thanks to the efforts of Ramachandran, the founder secretary of Hamsadhwani, the Hindustani music fest has become an annual feature.

This year’s fest was held recently. Inaugurated by vidwan T.V. Gopalakrishnan, the first day featured a concert by Lalitha Sharma , a disciple of Pt. Jasraj. She was accompanied by Vyas Murthy Katti on the harmonium and Vishwanath Nakod on the tabla. Melody reigned supreme as Lalitha explorated raga Charukesi with élan. A brief but beautiful alaap of raga Hamsadhwani preceded the song ‘Nathpawan Suth’, portraying the majesty of Hanuman.

Sanjeev Abhayankar and V. Sankaranarayanan were on an equal footing in displaying their virtuosity in a jugalbandi. Their RTP in Megh and Brindavana Saranga showcased their mastery over their respective styles. .A soothing Hindi bhajan, ‘Bhajore Manava’ came like a breath of fresh air. But was it necessary to combine an abhang and kriti ‘Venkatachala nilayam’? It somehow did not do justice to both the songs… The artists were accompanied by Nagai Sriram on the violin, K.V. Prasad on the mridangam, Vyas Murthy Katti on the harmonium and Vishwanath Nakod on the tabla.

This festival also provided a platform for young musicians. One such was Chennai-based Poly Verghese , who plays the mohanaveena, like his guru Pt. Vishwamohan Bhatt. Suro Jatho Roy accompanied him on the tabla. A concert by Suparna Shankaran concluded this festival.