When a young brigade took the stage

Niranjana Srinivasan. Photo: S.R. Raghunathan  

Shanmukhapriya's first Amruthadwani Isai Vizha at Swamy's Hall featured concerts of the up-and-coming musicians during their nine-day series. Sushma Somasekharan's vocal recital in the company of K.J. Dileep and Sumesh S. Narayanan turned out to be a disciplined affair.

Her open-mouthed articulation and clear diction spoke about her present training under veteran Lalitha Sivakumar. Sushma's raga essays of Kalyanavasantham (‘Nadaloludai' of Tyagaraja) and Sankarabharanam (‘Swara Ragasudha' by Tyagaraja) were on exact proportions without excesses. She could suffuse the customary phrases with her own creativity providing enough room for karvais as well as roll-ons. Sushma is meticulous in her swara suites too.

Her shadjam-centred swaras in Sankarabharanam and the quick allowances of swaras in Bhoopalam (‘Gopalaka Pahimam' by Swati Tirunal) and Purvikalyani (‘O Rama Ne Namam' by Badrachala Ramadas) were impressive.

D.K. Pattammal's famous ‘Poonguyil Koovum' (penned by Kalki) was an enjoyable inclusion in the end.

K.J. Dileep, from the school of M.S. Gopalakrishnan, proved his mettle through his replies on the violin. The pleasant and attentive percussion on the mridangam by young Sumesh S. Narayanan with a precise but exquisite tani avartanam was definitely a marker of this youngster's bright future.

Powerful voice

Ramakrishnan Murthy holds all credentials to become a much sought-after musician in the Carnatic music circle -- young, energetic, powerful voice and capable of alternating between animated and artistic articulations.

In his concert, Ramakrishnan elucidated the finer aspects of a solemn Varali (‘Eti Janmam' by Tyagaraja) and a soulful Bhairavi (‘Sari Evvaramma' by Syama Sastri). The comprehensive essays of the ragas were beautifully complimented by niraval at ‘Sati Leni' in ‘Eti Janmam' and ‘Madhawa Sodari' in ‘Sari Evvaramma.'

The vocalist's predilection for fast swaras almost figured in many places right from ‘Swaminatha Paripalaya' in Nattai by Dikshitar and the Atana number ‘Anupama Gunambuthi' by Tyagaraja. Nevertheless, it is better if Ramakrishnan keeps a tight leash on his swara sallies that tend to become mere syllables.

‘Va Muruga Va' in Begada once again showed Murthy's ability to go on a cool extrapolation on the line ‘Thenmathura Suvayae Va' through subtle inflections. V.V.S. Murari on the violin joined Ramakrishnan in bringing the delicacy of the ragas in his alapanas and swaras in his own style. Though sounding a bit exuberant, R. Sankaranarayanan added extra energy to the percussion on the mridangam.

Strident swaras

A full range voice is a blessing. But, if the vocalist exploits that to the maximum extent, it turns out to be exasperating. Niranjana Srinivasan glides to the upper region sancharas at the drop of a hat. Because of this, the soothing karvais she touched in the main piece in Simhendramadyamam were completely drowned in the melee of relentless brigas and phrases punctuated with tara sthayi notes. Her Kedaragowla varnam and ‘Vandeham Jagat Vallabham' in Hamsadhwani (Annamacharya) marked the beginning of her concert. Here too the extra long swaras almost touched the point of tedium.

The Saveri treatise showed several flashes of maturity and ingenuity.

However, once again her penchant for strident swara segment for the kriti ‘Enta Nerchina' (Patnam Subramania Iyer) overtook her poise. ‘Rama Rama Guna' in Simhendramadyamam (Swati Tirunal) and the subsequent niraval on ‘Muni Manasa' again found her reaching the upper registers. It is good Niranjana uses her voice with astuteness eschewing her over zeal fancy for high pitched singing.

The violinist invariably gets influenced by the vocalist. R. Satish Kumar's modest forays in Saveri turned aggressive in Simhendramadyamam.

S.J. Arjun Ganesh on the mridangam maintained his composure.

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Printable version | Apr 12, 2021 4:26:21 AM |

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