/* START Google Analytics Code*/ /* END of Google Analytics Code */ A home called "Parvathi": Thyagaraja's Faith in Sri Rama – Vidwan K.V. Narayanaswamy

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Thyagaraja's Faith in Sri Rama – Vidwan K.V. Narayanaswamy

The House of Sankalpa "Parvathi", Mysore, congratulates Vidwan Trichy Shankaran for winning the "Sangeeta Kalanidhi" award for 2011

The Parvathi Ramanavami festival started in 1970. Its inspiration for the Chowdiah Memorial that later came up in Bangalore is documented in this blog elsewhere. In that watershed year, many glorious concerts were held in Parvathi in memory of Sangeetha Rathna Chowdiah. The concert we feature here is one such gem, with stalwarts KVN, V. Sethuramiah, Trichy Sankaran, H.P. Ramachar and Mysore Manjunath.

Vidwan K.V. Narayanaswamy, whose name comes up every time we discuss the great Carnatic musicians of the last 60 years, has done exemplary service to the spirit of the Ramanavami festival in this concert. Every song is a masterpiece of music and devotional excellence.

The Pantuvarali song Ninne nera nammi nanura, sung with gusto, translates thus ( taken from The Spiritual Heritage of Tygaraja) :

From my early days, convinced that everything in the world is unreal, I have placed my implicit faith in you and you alone, Oh Rama! I have seen people learned in Vedas, Sastras and Puranas stand bewildered at the undetermined religious controversies. I have seen people roam restlessly performing Yagas passionately for worldly enjoyments. I have come to the conclusion that unless one obtains your grace, one cannot thrive in life in this world.

The saint composer states in Evarani:

I prostrate to those wise ones who combined the spirit of the two mantras viz. Ma from Shiva Panchakshari, and Ra from Narayana Ashtakshari and arrived at your blessed name “Rama”.

He goes on in Mokshamu galada:

Is it possible for one who is devoid of real devotion and knowledge of divine music, to attain salvation?

The concert has three stellar compositions – Pakkala Nilabadi in Kharaharapriya, Sri Subrahmanyaaya in Kambhoji, and Brochevaarevarura in Khamach. KVN delivers his trademark punches in the neraval and swara cycles in each song, replete with laya gymnastics, glides and curls around key musical phrases.

Maestro Sankaran's long career as a professor in Canada has limited his appearances in India somewhat to the December festivals (which he compares to the Olympics). This great artiste has made a unique contribution to Carnatic music over so many decades now. Vidwan Sankaran's mastery over the 'naada' of the mridangam as well as the art of accompaniment is in full flow in this concert.

Vidwan Sethuramiah's seven stringed violin accompaniment respectfully invokes the presence of his guru and rounds off this concert as a true tribute to T. Chowdiah, the epochal star of Carnatic music.

The Concert Details

K.V.Narayanaswamy ---- Vocal
V.Sethuramiah ----------- Violin
Trichy Shankaran -------- Mridangam
K.S.Manjunath ----------- Ghatam
H.P.Ramachar ------------ Khanjira
On 23 - 4 - 1970 at Parvathi.

Song List

01. Evarani – Devamruthavarshini – Thyagaraja *** 02. Ninne nera nammi – Pantuvarali – Thyagaraja *** 03. Pakkala Nilabadi – Kharaharapriya – Thyagaraja *** 04. Mokshamu galada – Saramathi – Thyagaraja *** 05. Sri Subrahmanyaaya – Kambhoji – Muthuswami Dikshithar *** 06. Brochevarevarura – Khamach – Mysore Vasudevachar ***.

(PS: We regret the vagaries of tape speed in this 41-year old recording.)