CONCERT Enjoy a fusion of footwork and flute as Pandit Hariprasad Chaurasia and Pandit Birju Maharaj come together for Tridha at The Hindu Friday Review November Fest
Venue: The Music Academy
Date and Time: November 15,
7. 30 p.m.
After years of sadhana and exploring the finer textures of the art to find their niches, maestros Pandit Hariprasad Chaurasia and Pandit Birju Maharaj have established themselves as influential soloists. They have put melody and rhythm to such improvisatory uses that Chaurasia makes the flute sing rather than just blowing tunes while Maharaj has taken Kathak many steps forward by infusing a new energy into its bols and chakkars.
Hailing from a family of wrestlers, Chaurasia preferred arousing the nine rasas in listeners to the akhada (wrestling ring). In his skilful hands the flute emerged from being a mere accompanying instrument to the mainstay of a full-fledged concert. His inventive playing technique made the bansuri bring out the nuances of the traditional Hindustani repertoire.
Birju Maharaj, the king of Kathak, belongs to the long, proud lineage of Kathak performers including Acchan Maharaj, Shambu Maharaj and Lachhu Maharaj. Over the past six decades, he has evolved his own vocabulary of movements, interpreting the art in ways that would make it relevant to contemporary sensibilities.
Joining the two aces in this triangle of melody — Tridha, is the young, charming and talented Hindustani vocalist Kaushiki Chakrabarty. Having trained under her well-known vocalist-father Ajoy Chakrabarty of the Patiala gharana, Kaushiki is the torchbearer of a hoary lineage and tradition.
The two Pandits talk about the making of Tridha and what it means in their creative journey.
Hariprasad Chaurasia: When the two Krishnas of the art world (Hari and Birju) come together, you can expect a leela of laya and taal.
Birju Maharaj: In our long journey, such stopovers or rather collaborations add a new dimension and meaning to our art.
Chaurasia: This is the first time I am performing with a dancer but I don’t consider it any different from my other musical partnerships.
Maharaj: Bansuri has always been an integral part of Kathak so this performance is a natural progression.
Chaurasia: Kaushiki will add the dynamism of youth with her impeccable voice. I was insistent that the third artiste of Tridha should be a youngster.
Maharaj: This will be a synthesis of nritta, abhinaya and swara.