FRIDAY REVIEW

Soulful rendition

Nedumangadu Sivanadan was awarded the Sangeetha Poornasree title.

Nedumangadu Sivanadan was awarded the Sangeetha Poornasree title.  

MADURAI GOPALASWAMY Sampoornam Mani has an uncanny knack of making a common raga attain amazing dimensions with an unexpected turn of a phrase and render kritis with a crystal clear diction. He can also render an unknown raga by focussing on its melody to endear to the audience.

A poet-composer in his own right Mani has been able to imbibe the subtle aspects of Hindustani music during his days in Delhi. He was initiated into Carnatic music by his mother, Sampoornammaal, and was then trained by the reputed Nagaswara Vidwan Ayyampettai Venugoapala Pillai, followed by a coaching session under Jalatharangam Babu Iyengar, the grandson of Poochi Iyengar.

Mani's passion for music made him abandon a lucrative job. He has also been associated with Mallisaimannan M.S. Viswanathan. Blessed with an opulent bass, he was invited by Johnson to sing Thyagaraja's `Nenendu Vetukudura' in Karanataka Behaug for the Malayalam movie, `Kudumbasametham.'

During his recent concert held in connection with the Uthram festival at Sree Poornathrayeesa Temple at Thripunithura, Mani kept the audience spellbound with his rendition of compositions by lyricist Thripunithura Jayaprakash for which the former had scored the music. With his genial temperament on and off the stage, Mani has a large following, which was evident from the size of the audience. Mani started with `Panchamukha Ganapathe' in Naatta, to be followed by a glittering Kanada. `Bhajamyaham' was laced with kalpanaswaras of a high order. The individuality of Kalyanavasantham was effectively projected and the vocalist complemented it by `Damodaraa,' which has been written and composed by the singer himself. `Paridanamichithe' (Bilahari) in Khandachappu by Pattanam Subrahmania Iyer was next. Shanmukhapriya with `Kalithakuvalaya,' Bhairavi with `Chinthayami' and Challare in Ahiri, in which Thyagaraja extols the virtue of worship through various flowers, turned out to be as bewitching as only Madurai G.S. Mani could make them so.

A virutham comprising Sudha Saranga, Bageswari and Kaapi preceded `Darsanatho Ghana Syam' in Misra Khamaj. Thrissur Rajendran and Changanassery Harikumar accompanied Mani.

B. Arundhathi scored with a mellifluous Mohanam along with Sreenada Saraswathi and a lovely Kalyani to which was attached Annapoorne in chappu, with a rich design of swara singing. Edappally Jayamohan (violin), Thripunithura Neelakantan (mridangam), Thripunithura Gopalakrishnan (ganjira) and Thripunithura Krishnadas on the edakka accompanied the singer.

Thamarakkad Govindan Namboodiri is one who is not averse to exploring new avenues in the realm of raga alpapana and has an inexhaustible urge to learn new compositions. His depiction of Durga, (`Bajaavo' in Theen Thal), well differentiated from its Carnatic counter-part Sudha Saveri, was delightful. So also was the portrayal of Thodi in true sampardaya with Sivasakthi. Jayamaohan (violin), Krishna Kamath (mridangam), Kannan (ghatom) and Ayyappan on the mukharsanghu accompanied Govindan. Both the vocalists boosted the standing of Jayaprakash Sangeetha Parishad. A veena duet by Padma S. Thampuran and Devi Vasudevan, accompanied by Krishna Das on the edakka, was short but sweet.

Notwithstanding several early set backs, Jayaprakash Sangeetha Parishad entered its 18th year with the usual Pancha Ratna singing led by T.K. Govinda Rao and N.P.Ramaswamy. Sangeetha archana held jointly by Cochin Devaswom Board and Uthram Tirunal Aghosha Samithi gave many youngsters an opportunity to sing. Earlier, violin maestro Nedumangadu Sivanadan was awarded the Sangeetha Poornasree title by the Parishad and Jayaprakash was honoured with Poornathrayee Puraskaram by the Devaswom Board.

JAYARAMAN V

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