Lilting in devotional spirit
The recital of Narayana Tirtha's Tarangams by K. Omana Kutty was moving in its melody.
RENDERED WITH FEELING: K. Omana Kutty singing tarangams. PHOTO: S. R. RAGHUNATHAN.
As K. Omana Kutty concluded her Tarangam concert during Narayana Tirtha's Jayanthi celebrations (for the Thirupoonthuruthy Sri Narayana Tirtha Swamigal Trust) at the Narada Gana Sabha with the lilting lines in Jujavanthi ("Kalaya Yashode Tava Balam") before cruising through Subhabantuvarali and Desh the long spell of applause from the audience spoke volumes of their feeling.
The 18th century saint poet has couched simple Sanskrit in melodious ragas the jathi-patterns and the tala teasing and challenging the musician.
After all it was music to which Lord Krishna danced with gay abandon. About 10 krithis in all, including some that contained only four verses for pallavi, anupallavi and charanam were presented by Omana Kutty, accompanied by Vimala Venugopal (vocal support), Sherthalai Sivakumar (violin) and Thirupoonthuruthy V. Visvanathan (mridangam).
The simplicity of the language employed by the scholar was quite evident in most of the krithis chosen at the concert.
For instance, take the description in the Hamsavinodini piece that Omana Kutty brought out so movingly: "Sharanam Bhava Karunamayi Guru Deena Dayalu" I bow before Thee, my teacher, who is a personification of compassion-and-sympathy!
"Damodara" in Keeravani for alapana and neraval, Revathi with baseline-melodic-swaras for "Jaya Jaya Gokula Bala," and the stimulating Kamas for "Swami Nam Vanamalinam" were some of the classics worth the mention. Said A. Ramji, a senior patron of the Trust, "The high points of this year's celebrations gaining momentum was All India Radio bringing the Tarangam Festival live on national broadcast and the Postal Department's release of a Special Cover on the 330th Jayanthi of Narayana Tirtha, one of the trailblazers of the Nama Sankeerthana Movement.
Typical Tirtha style
A special feature this year was the rendering of the tarangams in the traditional style with a folklore flavour and rhythmic jatis by Hyderabad Ghorakavi S. K. Sampath Kumar.
He is said to follow the way in which Narayana Tirtha taught his disciples and devotees in the Ongole area of Andhra Pradesh.
The recital tested the skills of accompanists Tiruvellore V. Parthasarathy (violin) and Manikudi S. Chandrasekaran (mridangam) who gallantly rose to the occasion.
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