/* START Google Analytics Code*/ /* END of Google Analytics Code */ A home called "Parvathi": February 2018

Saturday, February 3, 2018

Mother worship in Carnatic music

Vids. M. Chandrasekharan and Bharathi
K.Puttu Rao Memorial Violin Concert 2014

Review by R. Sachi

Welcoming the spring season of 2018, called Vasanta Ritu in India, we offer you a lovely violin concert by Sangeetha Kalanidhi Sri. M. Chandrasekharan, accompanied by his daughter and disciple Vid. Bharathi. The accompaniment by Vid. Cheluvaraju on the mridangam and Vid. Ramanujam on the ghatam complete a great team offering rich music in the Carnatic idiom.

Vid. Chandrasekharan is noted for his patent dark glasses as well as his singing violin with a unique personality. He has provided superb violin accompaniment for many decades to the best Carnatic musicians. His sensitive and imaginative approach to solo music is also recognised by rasikas. “Chandru” is a dear friend at the home of Parvathi and he has performed dozens of times in the Parvathi festivals. He casts a timeless charm even today on the audiences.

We have given much information about the Vidwan and his association with Parvathi in the previous concert postings. However, the subject of his mother’s influence on his music, and its importance in the context of Carnatic music, cannot be overemphasized.

Chandru’s violin guru was his mother, Smt. Charubala Mohan. We quote him from an interview to the Times of India in 2016:

Elaborating on her teaching style, Chandrasekaran says, "Her unimposing attitude gave me ample freedom to develop my own style and also appreciate various kinds of traditional music." Recalling one of his practice sessions with a smile, he says, "Just once she gave a gentle tap on my thigh because the bow for the violin kept slipping even after she taught me the technique. After that, I started doing it correctly."

Understanding the importance of exposure, Charubala ensured her son did not miss out on the performances of Carnatic stalwarts. From techniques to compositions, young 'Chandra' - as she fondly called him developed an ear for a variety of styles. "My mother would accompany me for almost every concert. If she couldn't make it, she made sure she sent someone with me. I rarely missed a performance," he reminisces.

The idea of the Mother Goddess is unique to Hinduism. Further, in Carnatic music, we have a huge body of compositions worshipping the Mother. In his famous Darini Telusukonti, Saint Thyagaraja says:

The saint was a devotee of Sri Rama, but found it fit to make this prayer to the Mother Goddess. This kind of prayer to the Mother pervades the krithis of many other composers, too, particularly Sri.Shyama Shastri, and Sri. Muthuswami Dikshitar.

Come, let us enjoy a lovely concert from a veteran master and his talented daughter!

Concert Details

M.Chandrashekharan --------- Violin
Bharathi --------------------------- Violin
Cheluvaraju ----------------------- Mridangam
Ramanujam --------------------- Ghatam

on 4-9-2014 during K.Puttu Rao Music Festival at Mysore.

01 Siddhi Vinayakam Anisham-Muthuswami Dikshitar-Chamaram (Shanmukha Priya) *** 02 Sri Jaalandhara-Jayachamaraja Wadiyar-Gambhira Nata *** 03 Enta Muddo-Thyagaraja-BinduMalini *** 04 Dattatreya Trimurtirupa-Ganapathi Sacchidananda Swamiji-Ranjani *** 05 Nagumomu-Thyagaraja –Abheri - ragamalika swaras medley: Begada, Basant, Desh followed by Tani *** 06 Tune only-Bagesri *** 07 BaroKrishnayya-Kanakadasa-Ragamalike *** 08 BhagyadaLakshmi-Purandaradasa-Madhyamavati ***