FRIDAY REVIEW

Classic ‘reconstruction'

Subtle sensuality: A still from ‘Prananathan Enikku...' in ‘Kadaksham,' featuring Shweta Vijay.  

NITA SATHYENDRAN

M. Jayachandran gives the evergreen ‘Prananathan Enikku...' a makeover for the movie ‘Kadaksham.'

W hen it came out in 1973, it created quite a stir. Though it was melody unbound as only maestro composer Devarajan Master could do it, the song from ‘Enippadikal' was frowned upon for its explicit lyrics written a couple of centuries ago by Irayimman Thampi.

New lease of life

And because of the controversy surrounding it, the song sung by P. Madhuri, was even banned by AIR, then the leading mass medium of the times. Yet throughout the years ‘Prananathan Enikku Nalkiya Paramanantha Rasathe' has remained among the best loved of Malayalm cinema's golden oldies. Now the evergreen number has been given a new lease on life by music director M. Jayachandran for the movie ‘Kadaksham,' directed by Paravoor Sasi. K. S. Chitra has lent her melodious voice to the new version.

“The new version is not a remix of the original score per se rather it is a complete reconstruction with new orchestration elements and all,” says Jayachandran. “I had dreamed of composing this song. But at first I was reluctant to take it on because to remake a classic of my gurunathan's [Devarajan Master] that is ingrained in the minds of all as a perfect composition, is no easy task. In fact, it turned out to be a real challenge to make it appealing to the new generation.

“To reconstruct the song, it helped that I considered the lyrics to be a completely new set,” adds the composer who worked to perfect the compostion for about a year before it was ready to be shot. He even got Chitra sing it quite a number of times before he was completely satisfied.

Jayachandran's hard work certainly paid of for the new version is completely different but retains the original's sensuality in a much less explicit way.

Soulful melody

The arrestingly soulful melody, which is almost like a murmur, has just the right amount of sensual elegance without deigning to eroticism. “I deliberately chose to tone down the eroticism of the lyrics and make it more elegant, more like a paean,” explains Jayachandran. And the melody appears to perfectly reflect the situation in the film, wherein the heroine, Janaki, a nubile young servant played by debutante Shweta Vijay, is thinking about the ecstasy she shares with her beloved master the artist Nathan, played by Suresh Gopi.

“The mood and lyrics of the song capture Janaki's state of mind as she submits to Nathan and becomes his muse. Interestingly, it is said that Irayimman Thampi was inspired to write the lyrics based on the relationship between Swathi Tirunal and a veena artiste by the name of Narayani,” says director Sasi, who has previously given us the re-mastered version of another evergreen number ‘Pachapanam thatte' in his last film, ‘Nottam.'

“It was very hard to picture ‘Prananathan Enikku…' on film because of the intensity and depth of emotion in the song. All the bhavas have thus been portrayed through mudras of contemporary dance choreographed by the Samudra troupe,” adds the director.

The music release of ‘Kadaksham' is on January 2.