The young Vidya Raghavan should be commended for her choice of kritis, rendered mostly in vilamba kalam. She has a good voice which traverses well in the upper octave, and with some training, she can achieve the same effect in the lower sancharas too.
The concert began with Natakurinji varnam ‘Calamela’ in which the beauty of the raga was missing. ‘Srinathadi Guruguho,’ the Dikshithar composition, was beautifully rendered with kalpanaswaras at ‘Mayamalavagowla’ which did not have any specific pattern. Raga alapana of Sahana though developed well, had some loose ends and repetition, and the involvement was not sustained. The chosen kriti, Tyagaraja’s ‘Emaanadicchevo,’ was rendered with involvement and there was niraval at “Yasamaayuvu.........Cittamu” , and the kalpanaswara again was just an up-and-down exercise.
After ‘Vinata Suta Vahana’ in Jayantasena came Thodi, the main raga of the concert. Unlike Sahana, the elucidation of Thodi was expansive and devoid of repetition, with long sustained notes; it created a positive impact. ‘Nannubrocutaku Tamasamela,’ Subbaraya Sastri’s composition was rendered neatly with niraval and swaras at ‘Sramamellanu.’ The tail pieces included ‘Jagadoddarana,’ ‘Sa Pasya Kausalya’ and a thillana.
Vidya has potential and with more maturity, confidence and practice, she should be able to reach greater heights. A little more attention is necessary on pronunciation, diction, (in many places words fell differently on the ear) and splitting of words, and the kalapramanam should also be intact.
The violinist Sandeep Narayanan needed to adjust the strings from the beginning, and though his bowing was good, he didn’t quite get his foothold. Sumesh Narayanan played quite well, perfectly following the kritis. The tani was crisp and compact.Moments of involvement
V. Navaneet Krishnan who opened his concert with ‘Viribhoni,’ the ata tala varnam in Bhairavi, had a long line-up of songs for a two-hour concert. ‘Tulasidalamulace’ in Mayamalavagowla was rendered next with a short spell of niraval and swaras at ‘Sarasiruha.’
‘Toli Nenu Jeyu’ in Kokiladhwani was followed by an impressive raga alapana of Vasantha. A brisk rendition of ‘Sitamma Mayamma,’ which included a chittaswaram, had niraval and a few rounds of kalpanaswaras at ‘Dhara Nija Varellanu’; it boosted the concert.
A fairly good exposition of Ananda Bhairavi preceded a mechanical rendition of Syama Sastri’s kriti’ Mari Vere Gati.’
The kalpanaswaras at the pallavi line were placid. Sometimes, one feels, it is unnecessary to sing kalpanaswaras for songs with chittaswaram. It becomes too much especially if lot of such songs are included in a concert.
A fast paced ‘Bhogeendra Sayinam’ in Kuntalavarali was followed by the main piece, Poochi Iyengar’s ‘Parama Pavana’ in Poorvikalyani (again with a chittaswaram).
The raga alapana, which could have been more elaborate, had some beautiful phrases here and there. The niraval at ‘Kanakambhara Dhara’ was good and kalpanaswaras had some interesting and varied patterns.
Violinist Usha Rajagopal’s raga expositions were good. The sahithya came alive in Umayalpuram Mali’s mridangam and he presented a vibrant tani.
The tail pieces included ‘Saramaina’ in Behag, ‘Vananai Mathi Soodiya,’ the Appar Theveram in Kiravani, ‘Anru Ivvulagam,’ Andal’s Tiruppavai in Sindhu Bhairavi and a thillana. Despite having seasoned accompanists, and a voice with very good range, he failed to create an impact.