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Magic of the reed

A. SANGAMESWARAN

K.S. Gopalakrishnan kept the audience spellbound with his mastery over the flute.



Ethereal performance:Veteran flautist K.S.Gopalakrishnan.

The expressive power of the flute was brought out meticulously by maestro flautist K.S. Gopalakrishnan (KSG) at a concert at Chalakudy. His ethereal performance was a treat for all, with a repertoire that appealed to laymen and connoisseurs alike. The concert itself was a spiritual odyssey of sublime music, where the individual craftsmanship of each artiste contributed to the totality of the performance.

Exquisite ragalapanas

A brief alapana of Abhogi before the varnam ‘Evaribhodha' was an indication of the treat to follow. Right from the opening piece till the end, almost all the kritis that KSG rendered was preceeded by a ragalapana. These ragalapanas varied in duration depending on the nature of the item. Moreover, they were intermittently impregnated with the phrases from the common kritis of that particular raga – something that is often to be found in the maestro's concerts. Further, the reproductions of these phrases by violinist C. Rajendran, was spot on.

KSG detailed Hamsadhwani before taking up the popular ‘Vathapi Ganapathim.' It was studded with manodharma swaras. Mayamalavagowla unfurled in abundance in this essay as well as in the Swati Tirunal piece ‘Deva Deva Kalayamithe.' He brought out the solemnity of a devotee who yearns for forgiveness from the Lord, through the niraval ‘Jatharoopanibachela.' Next came a serene Hindolam (‘Saamajavaragamana'). Here too KSG stressed the importance of sahitya in the kriti and added the prefix ‘saama' before the charanam ‘Vedasiromathruja,' a la MDR. After ‘Anuraagamule' (Saraswathi), came the main item of the evening – ‘Bhajare Maanasa' (Abheri), with niraval and an array of manodharma swaras and structured korvais. ‘Chaliye Kunjanu' (Brindavanasaaranga) was a delicious treat and KSG rounded off the concert with his inimitable ‘Bhagyatha Lakshmi' (Madhyamaavathi).

Rajendran wielded the bow fantastically, often inducing KSG into more detailing of his brief raga interludes. An experienced hand, his raga essays were superb, well-structured and did not waver from the principles of classicism. Consummate mridangam artiste B. Harikumar and Udupi Sreedhar on the ghatam presented a scintillating taniavartanam. The concert was organised by Chalakudy Sangeetha Sabha.

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