FRIDAY REVIEW

CULTURAL crossover

LEO TOLSTOY'S play Light Shines in Darkness, translated to Kannada by Venkataramana Aithal, was staged at Rangayana in Mysore recently. Karmugila Minchanthe directed by Chidambara Rao Jambe is based on life of Nicholas (Vasudev Ganger), who preferred to lead a life free of hypocrisy. There comes a time in his life when he is forced into making compromises.

Ranga Kishora team made an impressive presentation of the play with simple costumes (Prameela Bengre) and minimal set design (H.K. Dwarakanath). Madhuraveena (Mary) Chinna B.H. (Luba) were natural actors, while Vasudev Gangeri as Nicholas stole the show with his mature performance.

Sringeri Nagaraj from Shimoga performed under the aegis of Sri Krishnagana Sabha, Gokulam, Mysore. The artiste blessed with a good voice knows his music. But the svaraprastara was more mathematical than creative. Gouli Panthu ("Teratiyagarada") and Poorna Chandrika ("Telisi Rama Chintana") of Sri Tyagaraja were rendered. The raga-tana-pallavi in Kalyani was well articulated. P.S. Sridhar gave a good support on mridangam.

Nadaswara, an instrument that has not many takers today, was a staple feature of the Ramanavami concerts. Maestros such as Namagiripetai Krishnan and Sait Chinna Moulana used to be part of most prestigious festivals. Today, it is sadly confined to religious festivals and marriages in Karnataka. Nadaswara exponents Dakshinamurthy from Bangalore and Khasim and Babu from Trichy gave captivating performances at Kalamandira, Mysore.

Vidwan Dakshinamurthy accompanied by Venkatesh and Jayaram on Tavil played Valachi, and Saramathi ("Mokshamugalada"). The alapana and the swara kalpana seemed to fall short of expectation. He concluded the concert with "Baro Krishnaiah" and "Rama Rama Rama Sita Rama Enniro". Subsequent concert by Vidwan Khasim and Babu from Trichy at the same venue started with Tyagaraja's pancharatna in raga Gowla ("Dudukugala") followed by Shankarabharana. The artistes concluded with raga Kapi.

C. A. Sridhar who hails from the cultural family has launched Nadamandira, a new cultural outfit in Mysore. The organisation aims for research in various aspects of Carnatic music, besides other activities related to music. Dr. R. Satyanarayana, Dr. Sampath Kumaracharya (both musicologists), vainika R.K. Raghavan from the renowned Bakshi Subbanna tradition were felicitated by the veteran flutist Chilakunda K. Anantharamiah on the occasion.

Vocal concert by G.S. Kamala and Rajalakshmi, renowned vocalists of yesteryear, marked the inaugural function.

B.S.S. RAO

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