DATE : 25th NOV 2012
VENUE : RAVINDRA BHARATI, HYDERABD
It was the last day of NOVEMBER FEST 2012 and a concert of Jugalbandi by one of my most loved classical singer Bombay Jayashri and flute by Ronu Majumdar , I know so little of Ronu till I heard him yesterday.And what a night it was, full of poetry and divinity rendered through the voice and flute of divine souls accompanied aptly by Suresh Narayanan at Mridangam and Ajit Pathak with Tabla.
We went in nearly 30 minutes before the show to the venue (RAVINDRA BHARATI) and it was full so there were advertisements of sponsors to begin with.So a word about the sponsors, BOSE and FRIDAY REVIEW (a Friday edition of THE HINDU).BOSE gives us the best sound and that being the sponsor, I was sure of going to hear the perfect acoustics in BOSE speakers, so thanks to BOSE. Now when cultural news is fading away to the commercial fanfare (politics and entertainment) that occupies most of the columns in newspapers, we have a special edition by THE HINDU in FRIDAY REVIEW and this very edition has always given out very precious and valuable information and is it's own way has been the torchbearer for the cultural and arts news in INDIA.I respect this edition and mostly go through it. While there were other substantial sponsors that helped this event.
About Bombay Jayashsri : She is one of my most favourite classical singers and I am privileged to have known her through an A R Rahman composition "Sasivadane" and then through many songs and the very very popular "Zara Zara". But my most favourite of her renditions is Subramanya Bharati's "Suttum Vizhi Chudarvaal". And well she has learnt music from Lalgudi Jayaraman, a legend and a genius.
About other artists, I have not known much so not writing much here. OK, now let me revisit those divine 2 hours of the concert (kutcheri with a jugalbandi) and what a heavenly feeling it was. It began with the Aalaap of Raaga Saraswati in Ek Taal (Rupakam in Carnatic Music). The Aalaap was agreat opening with the austerity and poise of something great, it took the audience to a trance, Wow, to Ronu Majumdar for sustaining at few places. Can you believe one note being sutained for more than a minute in flute, it was just stupendous and magical. And the rendition by Bombay Jayshri was exemplary. The Aalaap was followed by a "Saraswati Namostute" a great composition and it was rendered as if Saraswati Devi herself was singing a song for herself. Such was the divinity there.
Next, was the Tyagaraya Krithi "Sara Sama Dana" in Kaapinarayani and the flute was done in Jhinjhoti. Now, the Kriti was preceeded by the Aalaap and then the Jodi (taal) and what a soulful Aalaap that was, mellifluous. When the Kriti began, I believed there was a strong resemblance to the song "Raghuvamsa Sudha" in Kadanakutoohalam, and only now I found out that indeed that there is a similarity. Look at the Aarohana (Aa) and Avarohana (Av) of both and one can understand.
Aa: S R2 M1 P D2 N2 S
Av: S N2 D2 P M1 G3 R2 S
Aa: S R2 M1 D2 N3 G3 P S
Av: S N3 D2 P M1 G3 R2 S
If that was beautiful, then the romantic number was yet to come and it came as "More Mandir Aaj Woh Nahi Aaye" sung in Jaijaiwanti while the flute was rendered in Bageshri/Desh. It was beautiful and Romantic the Aalaap, the song, it was just a perfect song for a romantic night, just that romance was happning through music. The god was with his flute and the goddess rendering this. It gave the most happiest feeling, just loved it.
This song, was followed by the "thaniyavarthanam" a percussion contest of Mridangam and Tabla. It was indeed a contest and both had to outplay each other and by the end, we were all thrilled by the talented musicians came to their own and gave us something great, they felt like they were speaking and lsitening to each other then they swayed their daggers and finally called peace. Also, I noticed a few rasikas walking away, may be they thought that was the last item.
Then, came a request by Ronu Majumdar, that he wants to perform "Krishna Nee Begane" so can we stay there for a few minutes more, for sure everyone wanted more and then began what I can say, the best rendition of this song, it had taken a long time to reach that sangam (confluence) and the path of the river was just fluid. To merge into the ocean, this song was the right one chosen and indeed it's Pandit Ronu's most favourite song as this is about Krishna "The God of Flute"
And then, came the applause that had been heard many a times all through this great concert, now this applause had come with a standing ovation and I stood there bowing my head in salutation to the God and Goddess and to the heaven, the stage that has given me divine pleasure. It's a night that I shall never forget.