Event G. Ramanathan weaved the magic of Carnatic music with saxophone. Velcheti Subrahmanyam
It was an evening of Carnatic classical idiom that kept the sangeetha rasikas in thrall at Kalabharati Visakhapatnam as Chennai-based G Ramanathan blew his way into the hearts of audience with his entrancing saxophone. Son of T. V. Gopalakrishnan and disciple of sax maestro Kadari Gopalnath, he was in his element all through. Hosted by Visakha Music Academy as Gundu Sarojini Memorial Concert, it stood out for its classical appeal.
The way he weaved the magic of Carnatic classical music with the Western instrument reflected his command over the instrument. That he revels in playing was evident in every frame. Displaying remarkable grip, he brought out the melodic charms of the chosen ragas in coalescence with sahitya bhava.
Precise and elegant gamakas with evocative tonality of raga essays endeared his performance. Harnessing the instrument to the hilt, he tapped its melodic possibilities in full exploring the contours of chosen ragas in a structured manner.
He commenced with Abhogi varnam. His rendition of raga Hamsadwani laced with fine swarakalpana for Vaathapi Ganapathim of Muttuswamy Deekshitar was classy. He chose raga Kharaharapriya for Chakkanirajamaragamu of Thyagaraja for elaboration as the mainstay of the session, which in its detailed treatment in two speeds testified his manodharma.
He put good spirit and imagination on view in exploring the varied shades of the raga. Be it an appealing raga essay or its deft improvisation, he did it with the flourish of a maestro. While raga Lathangi for Aparadhamula of Patnam Subhramanyaiyer brought out the mood of the composition, Marivere gathi of Shyama Sastry in raga Anandabhiravi unveiled the unswerving mind of a devotee in total submission at the lotus feet of the Lord. Devadideva in raga Sunadavinodini and Enthamuddo in raga Bindumalini evoked warm response.
The other notables in his concert included Paramapurusha of Swathi Tirunal in Vasantha, Nanatibatuku of Annamayya in Revathi, Kamalapthakula in Brindavanasaranga and Raghuvamsa in Kadanakutuhala besides a Western tune.
Pappu Gynandev on violin, VS Raghavan on mridangam and M Suryaprasadarao on ghatam were at their best.