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Soulful morning ragas

PARAMESHWAR HEGDE, Hindustani vocal artiste from Bangalore, delighted the audience with soothing morning ragas on April 20 at the Ragasudha Hall. Performing for `Raaga,' a non-profit organisation, Hegde claimed that he enjoyed singing the morning ragas, a rarity, especially for the Chennai rasikas.

Ably accompanied by Gopalakrishna Hegde on the tabla and Vyasmurthi Katti on the harmonium, Parameshwar began his concert with the soulful early morning raag, Aahirbhairav. He rendered a vilambit in ek taal followed by a drut in teen taal. Parameshwar's vidwat sparkled from the very beginning.

As he developed the raag in vilambit, `thero jiya sukh pavun', the gentle sway in his voice, with which he exemplified the beauty of the raag was soothing. The landing and take off on the anthara "Vinathi Prabhu," beginning with the vadi note `ma' and eviding with the samvadi note `sa' was sketched with a lot of emotion.

Following Bilaskani Todi, a late morning raga of `Bhairavi That' was composed by the great Tansen in honour of his son Bilaskan. It is a sampooran-shadava raag with ri, ga, dha and ni as komal swaras, the pattern of swaras are beautifully designed to create a magical effect. Parameshwar presented a vilambit in Roopak taal, followed by dhrut a in Teen taal. The dhrut, "Kaiso Milo Shyama Sundar Ke'' had great audience appeal and Parameshwar's excellent sruti alignment and voice control were explicit in his rendering of fast tans. Vyasmurthi Katti followed meticulously and Gopalakrishna Hegde played the tabla brilliantly. The short bandesh in raag Bhatiar, "Jago Jago Pyare More Lal'' was a beautiful piece. Parameshwar continued with yet another afternoon raag, Shudh-Sarang, belonging to Kapi That. Vilambit — "Jare Kaga Pa More Piya'' and madhyalay "bhavane ja jare'' were followed by a tarana rendered with expertise. During the alaap, the elevation to `ma', typical of Sarang, elevated one's feelings to pure devotion. As a fitting finale, Parameshwar sang lovely bhajans.

The Kabir bhajan, "Bhajore Bhaiya Ram Govinde Hare'' in raag Jog, "Basavanna Vachana'' in Kannada in raag Tilang and the Meera bhajan, "More Ghar Aavo'' in raag Bhairavi were all beautiful numbers. On listeners' request, he sang the popular, but traditional piece, "Bhavani Dayani" in Bhairavi to conclude the grand three-hour concert.

PUSHPA LAKSHMAN

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