At high voltage speed

Mass appeal: Aruna Sairam. Photo: R. Shivaji Rao  

Aruna Sairam’s concert at MFAC tagged on to ‘her’ grammar – a combination of Carnatic songs with a subdued dose of manodharma. Therefore, one had to view it through a different prism. ‘Mass’ ingredients dominated a high voltage first half in which the audience had to request for toning down of the amplification.

An Andal Paasuram, ‘Vaiyathu Vazhveergaal Naamum’ in gowla prefaced with a characteristic virutham was followed by ‘Needaya Rada’ (Vasantha Bhairvai, Tyagaraja) with niraval at ‘Rama Rama’ which was rendered in a bhajan style. The Ritigowla raga alapana was passé but the kriti, ‘Enna Punniyam Seidheno’ (Oothukadu Venkatakavi, misra chapu) invoked poignancy. ‘Siva Siva Enarada’ (Pantuvarali, Tyagaraja) and ‘Sivanai Ninaithavar’ (Hindolam, Papanasam Sivan) were rendered at highway speeds that did not capture the musical values well. The Dikshitar dasavatara prabhavam kriti (each avatara sung in a different ragam) was a novel addition to the menu and highlighted Aruna’s endeavour to expand her repertoire.

Aruna’s Kharaharapriya (‘Sreenivasa Tava Charanam, Sivan) was classically essayed. The phrases in the middle octave had good intonations and clarity. The beautiful kriti of Sivan culminated in some passionate niravals at “Kamalaja manohara” and the swara fireworks. Long, second speed sarvalaghu swaras seem like a new hit with the audience. ‘Adinatho Ranga’ in Arabhi, Hamsandandi (Purandara dasa) was a trademark Aruna song. Raghavendra Rao had a limited role in the first half, but sparkled in the Kharaharapriya raga and niraval, even though the tone was sometimes indifferent. Patri (Mridangam) and S V Ramani (Ghatam) revelled in the broad tempo of the concert and accentuated the frenzy.

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Printable version | Jan 18, 2022 11:27:14 AM |

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