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Choice kritis chastely traditional

T. K. GANAPATHY

Singing for Rajalakshmi Fine Arts, musicians balanced creativity and sampradaya.



P. Unnikrishnan.

Preceded by a varnam in Kedaragowlai, ``Swami nee daya" in vilamba and durita kaalams and Pancha maatanga (Malahari) with swaras, M. S. Sheela's concert for Rajalakshmi Fine Arts was balanced with regard to kriti selection and sampradaya style of music. ``Orajoopu" in Kannadagowlai added lustre to her rich and sweet voice. Her delineation of Aarabhi for ``Jootamurare" and Saranga Malhar for ``Sree Mahabala" could have included a few more sangatis. Her Todi alapana came with all its nuances, intricacies and long karvais revealing the vocalist's manodharma. The neraval and kalpanaswaras rendered for ``Gaddhanu variki" were poised and measured. Her rendition of Ashtapadi in Hamsanandhi was soulful.

Shertalai Sivakumar was the violinist. Sudhindra (mridangam) and Guru Prasanna (ganjira) proved their prowess both as accompanists and in tani.

Distinctive

Despite his occasional forays into the music of the tinseldom, Unnikrishnan's tutelage under his guru, Calcutta K. S. Krishnamurthy makes his music distinctive without sidelining the values of Carnatic music. Well-aligned to sruthi, his resonant voice delighted the rasikas. His opening Naattai varnam, ``Sarasijanabha maampahi" cantered in to be followed by ``Sreenaadhadhi" in Mayamalavagowla that sparkled with an arresting neraval and swaras. Thyagaraja's ``Vaadera deivamu" in Pantuvarali captured philosophical and spiritual content in all its grandeur. His detailed essay of Karaharapriya was full of raga bhava. His expansive Todi alapana revealed his penchant for tarasthayi phrasings with exquisite skill and discrimination for the melting beauty of ``Enneramum oru kaalai" composed by Marimutha Pillai. Janani Ninnuvina in Reethigowlai was presented with the sheen intact. The cutcheri ended with a vibrant thillana in Hamsanandhi.



M. S. Sheela.

The violin (Akkarai Subbulakshmi) preferred sowkhyam merging delicately with the ambience and her solo versions rustled with charm and grace. The tani of K. V. Prasad (mridangam) and Sridhar (ghatam) fitted well with the singing style of the vocalist.

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