Anybody who looks at G.Anantharaman, who has just turned 15, will scarcely credit him with any knowledge of music, leave alone erudition. Thus to see him sit on the stage as the lead performer at a concert organised by Sriranjani and sing a lengthy alapana of Ramapriya with the aplomb of a veteran, was stupefying to say the least.
RASIKA RANJANI SABHA
Age belies their talents
Sitting to his left with a violin was 14-year old, Vittala Rangan, who seemed as comfortable in playing a Ramapriya alapana as reciting ‘2-ones-are-2.’ On the other side was the 16-year-old Tiruchi G.Aravind, whose mridangam sounds meshed with the vocal music so fine that it was impossible to recognise it.
The three kids produced a mature concert on the New Year Eve, as though to assure the world that all will be fine with Carnatic music. Anantharaman, a disciple of Meena Venkatraman and Sirkazhi Jayaraman, began the concert with a Nattai (‘Eka Dantam’) and adorned it with several rounds of swaras on the pallavi line. This was followed by the Kiravani composition of Harikesanallur Muthaiah Bhagavathar, ‘Amba Vani.’ There was no alapana, but there was niraval at the lines ‘Vara Veena Pani Vaak Vilasini.’ It was a fine niraval although a little fleeting while traversing the upper notes.
Then came a lovely Surutti alapana, followed by the Dikshitar piece, ‘Sri Venkata Girisham.’ Both in the Surutti alapana as well as in the subsequent Ramapriya, a reliance on brigas almost to the total exclusion of karvais was evident. This is an area for correction, for though a briga-based alapana is not wrong, karvais on the anchor notes of a raga, adds beauty to the alapana. There were long swaras at the pallavi line. It is common, and indeed excusable, for young artistes to have some kind of a formatted approach to kalpanaswara singing. But if Anatharaman and party had rehearsed their notes, there was no evidence of it throughout the concert.
After a filler in Malayamarutham (‘Manasa Etulo’), came the Ramapriya. This 52nd melakartha raga resembles Vachaspathi (except ‘ri’, all the notes are common), but the young vocalist had no difficulty in keeping the identity of Ramapriya clear. It was a fluent, breezy alapana, very briga-oriented, the notes clearly emerging from the depths of his throat. Dikshithar’s ‘Matangi Raja Rajeswari,’ in Rupakam, was the chosen song. Anantharaman and Vittala Rangan (disciple of Kanyakumari) rendered a splendid niraval at ‘Rama Manohari,’ which incidentally, is the name of the raga in the Dikshithar school. Tiruchi Aravind (disciple of Thanjavur Veeraswamy) played a very brisk thani.
Send this article to Friends by