Madurai Mani Iyer

Carnatic Musicians

Re: Madurai Mani Iyer

#776  Postby tkb » 13 Apr 2012 10:47

It was indeed a great treat to the ears and all credits to the team which has made this happen!
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Re: Madurai Mani Iyer

#777  Postby rajeshnat » 13 Apr 2012 11:51

Balummi wrote:I thank all those who thronged Arkay convention Hall for the Ramanavami Concert of Madurai Mani Iyer held on 12-06 -1966 at Aswametha Mahamandapam , Venus Colony with Chowdiah , Palghat Mani Iyer and Madurai Krishna Iyengar. The recording was replayed on 12 - 04 - 2012 . There was no room even for moving our limbs . It was overwhelming and the recording by SL was excellent . We want more such replaying of concerts instead of somebody else singing in MMI's honour as the original can never be replaced by others.


BaluMMI,
MAy I know the song list of this concert.

Just one point , while replaying recording that too shri MMI is good ,let us also not forget a performing musician in chennai has lost an opportunity to perform and the vibes of live music is always much higher than recorded music.

I remember once Semmangudi mAmA saying once in a tribute to MMI, Mani Iyer sangeetham romba osathi , appadiyE avar mAmA Madurai Pushpavanam mathiriyE pAduvAr. Thank God in 1940's to 1960's, we did not have Madurai Pushpavanam recordings, for all that we know on 12-06-1966, if there was a recording of Madurai pushpavanam , we would have had then a replay of Madurai Pushpavanam recording instead of MMI singing during a ramanavami in 1966 :)

It is a challenge for "today's musician to perform with a free mind and a reasonable time duration" amidst the vaibhavam,akandam, CD Release, Birthday Celebrations , kshetram and the newly created series of replays.
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Re: Madurai Mani Iyer

#778  Postby Balummi » 13 Apr 2012 13:56

Dear Rajesh ,
Madurai Sri Pushpavanam Iyer passed away, if I remember correct ,when MMI was only 5 years old . There was no chance of even MMI recollecting his voice . How could Semmangudi Mama who was only 9 years at that time could remember it . Probably he could have heard it said from his guru Sri Maharajapuram Viswanatha Iyer ! Anyway the list of songs that was replayed yesterday were :
Telisirama , Ankarakam ( not played as yesterday was a Thursday ), Apparama ( Pantuvarali ) , Brovabarama , Seethapathe ( not Played ) , Sarasasama , Vinanasakuni ( Prataba Varali ) , Vinathasudha ( Jeyanthasena ), Ka Va Va , Inthasowkya ( Kapi ) , Virutham , Slokam , Vellaithamarai , Note , Karpagame , Maaye & Mangalam.
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Re: Madurai Mani Iyer

#779  Postby venkatakailasam » 13 Apr 2012 18:48

I have posted two of MMI's concert here...

viewtopic.php?f=2&t=18857

Sarasaksha paripalayam in Pantuvarali

and Sarasa sama dhana in Kapi narayani...
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Re: Madurai Mani Iyer

#780  Postby kapali » 13 Apr 2012 19:07

Reg the AYodhya mandapam Ramanami concert of 1966' it must be in the twilight years of MMI and Chowdiah as MMI passed way 2years later and Chowdiah only a year later.
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Re: Madurai Mani Iyer

#781  Postby venkatakailasam » 13 Apr 2012 19:27

A song by Smt Rajam Pushpavanam daughter of Madurai Pushpavanam posted by vintageaudio54

Rajam Pushpavanam_Krishna Nee Begane..

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1YADM6GBfnM
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Re: Madurai Mani Iyer

#782  Postby Balummi » 14 Apr 2012 10:26

Krishna Nee posted by Venkatakailasam is very good to listen . Sometime back I uploaded Krishna Nee by MMI himself recorded from AIR Darwar in 1960's . The reception was not good here in Chennai and there was lot of distrurbances.
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Re: Madurai Mani Iyer

#783  Postby venu sundar » 20 Apr 2012 07:42

Believe it or not!On April 12th 2012 at 6-30PM the ARKAY HALL AT THE LUZ was overflowing with 300+rasikas of Madurai Mani Iyer 44 years after the death of the legendary musician and it was an emotional evening.The live concert was held during the RAMANAVAMI SERIES AT THE VENUS COLONY ALWARPET IN 1966 APRIL 12TH.MMI Birth Centenary Commitee organised the function to listen to the Master MAdurai Mani Iyer and the accompaniments were again the legendary Chowdiah on Violin and Palghat Mani Iyer on Mridangam and PMI 100 is also coinciding with the MMI 100!Sri Krishnan was on the Kanjira.MMI started off with Telsirama folllowed by RARA MINTIDAGA and APPA RAMA BHAKTI!Sarasa SAMA DANA was the main piece in Kapi narayaini and the concert included Entha Sowkiya Panile a Kapi ragam and incidentlaly MMI was a true good Coffee lover.MMI focussed on songs on LORD RAMA and it was MUSIC filled with BHAKTHI
all the way.The audience were the lucky lot and they responded very well and the hall was JAM PACKED TO SAY THE LEAST>ALL along 2and half hour concert all the fans of yesters of MMI PMI TS AND KRISH sat and stood in full attendance in spite of the fact it was Tamil New Year EVe and also CSK match was at the Chepauk on 12th evening.The organisation of the event was SIMPLY SUPERB one.Full credit goes to the parnership of the DUO S/S JAYARAMAKRISHNAN AND SLS AS HE IS known SLS NARASIMHAN for the FANTASTIC efforts.SLS was incharge of AUDIO and it was like MMI came down and treated us with his company of TS PMI AND KRISH.JRK SHOULD BEcomplimented for his silent and sincere work which brought out such great musical event.Arkay organisers did a fine job.KUDOS TO ALL
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Re: Madurai Mani Iyer

#784  Postby kapali » 21 Apr 2012 05:43

It was interesting to read your appreciative account of the replaying of the entire 1966 MMI concert in the April 12 function and highlighting the Sarasamadana as the main piece of the concert. In this connection I recollect. reading a long article in The Hindu more than a decade ago about an MMI concert some time in the fifties held at Abhiramapuram. It related in detail how MMI and Chowdiah were having a detailed swarams session for SArasamadhana with each trying to outdo the other (the crowd wondering how. This climax will come to an end), finally reaching a grand crescendo to the great delight of the audience! I wonder whether any recording of that concert is available, if any.
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Re: Madurai Mani Iyer

#785  Postby kapali » 21 Apr 2012 05:43

It was interesting to read your appreciative account of the replaying of the entire 1966 MMI concert in the April 12 function and highlighting the Sarasamadana as the main piece of the concert. In this connection I recollect. reading a long article in The Hindu more than a decade ago about an MMI concert some time in the fifties held at Abhiramapuram. It related in detail how MMI and Chowdiah were having a detailed swarams session for SArasamadhana with each trying to outdo the other (the crowd wondering how. This climax will come to an end), finally reaching a grand crescendo to the great delight of the audience! I wonder whether any recording of that concert is available, if any.
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Re: Madurai Mani Iyer

#786  Postby kapali » 21 Apr 2012 05:46

It was interesting to read your appreciative account of the replaying of the entire 1966 MMI concert in the April 12 function and highlighting the Sarasamadana as the main piece of the concert. In this connection I recollect. reading a long article in The Hindu more than a decade ago about an MMI concert some time in the fifties held at Abhiramapuram. It related in detail how MMI and Chowdiah were having a detailed swarams session for SArasamadhana with each trying to outdo the other (the crowd wondering how. This climax will come to an end), finally reaching a grand crescendo to the great delight of the audience! I wonder whether any recording of that concert is available, if any.
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Re: Madurai Mani Iyer

#787  Postby kapali » 21 Apr 2012 05:50

By clicking mistake there is a repetition and so posts785 and 786 may be deleted.
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Re: Madurai Mani Iyer

#788  Postby varsha » 21 Apr 2012 08:10

http://www.mediafire.com/?xnik10ce7qkyxup

This climax will come to an end), finally reaching a grand crescendo to the great delight of the audience! I wonder whether any recording of that concert is available, if any.


A subdued Chowdiah instead . The crescendo starts but for some reason he gives in to the Thani . Looks like an issue with his instrument .Halfway through the thani , there is a lovely sound of the violin being tuned .
Nevertheless a very haunting piece .
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Re: Madurai Mani Iyer

#789  Postby venu sundar » 21 Apr 2012 11:39

DEAR KAPALI
I CAN FIND OUT AND HELP IN UR SEARCH.I F IREMEMBER RIGHT THE SAID CONCERT WAS AT GURUKUALM IN ABIRMAPURAM.PL REPLY!
VENU SUNDAR
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Re: Madurai Mani Iyer

#790  Postby kapali » 22 Apr 2012 07:19

Dear Venu, Perhaps what you mentioned as at Gurukulam may be correct.Since I read in The Hindu more than a decade ago I do not remember which year in the fifties that the article referred to.
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Re: Madurai Mani Iyer

#791  Postby rajeshnat » 06 May 2012 13:22

Hindu writeup of replay of MMI concert that was discussed
http://www.thehindu.com/arts/music/article3380189.ece
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Re: Madurai Mani Iyer

#792  Postby Balummi » 07 May 2012 17:56

Encouraged by the overwhelming response of rasikas for the recorded concert replayed at "ARKAY CONVENTION CENTRE" at Mylapore I am uploading an old 1938 Gramaphone Record of the Legend MMI " Thaye
Yezhaipal " in bairavi . I have used audio correction software for 78 rpm records and please respond with comments to further improve the recording : for e.g. Should I change the speed etc. Please follow this link
http://www.mediafire.com/?7w7q9rxa7nno2cw
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Re: Madurai Mani Iyer

#793  Postby bagyamananthu41 » 09 May 2012 20:20

courtesy rasikapriya group..

From: annaswami narayanaswami <anarayanaswami@yahoo.com >
To: F-SwaminathanVL <swaminathanvl@gmail.com>
Date: Sat, 24 Nov 2007 15:38:03 -0800 (PST)
Subject: Madurai Mani Iyer interview in 1960

Following is a translation of an Interview given by Shri Madurai Mani Iyer to All India Radio (A.I.R) recorded during early 60s. Seniors who heard him those days may enjoy this more
A.I.R: Namaskaaram. I would like to record your reminiscences about your gurukulavaasam. Whom you did study with at the very beginning ?
Madurai Mani Iyer: I learnt under Shri Rajam Bhagavathar in Madurai
A.I.R: Whose Disciple was Rajam Bhagavathar?
Madurai Mani Iyer: He was a disciple of Ettayapuram Ramachandra Bhagavatar. My Paternal uncle Madurai Pushpavanam Iyer and the nagaswara vidwan Madurai Ponnuswami pillai, were also disciples of Ramachandra Bhagavathar.
A.I.R: How long would you have learnt from Rajam Bhagavatar and when did you start performing ?
Madurai Mani Iyer: I learnt for 2 years from him. We lived in a portion of his house itself on rent. So, it was very convenient to learn from Rajam Bhagavathar.
Madurai Mani Iyer: After that, Harikesanallur Muthiah Bhagavatar established a music school in Madurai in which Rajam Bhagavatar was appointed as a teacher. So I happened to join that school. I learnt there too for about a year and a half. After that I started performing in concerts.
A.I.R: Can you recollect your very first concert where ?
Madurai Mani Iyer: I had been to the Sivagangai area along with my father who had friends there. My first concert was held there, in a place called Alavaakottai, during the kumbhaabhishekam festival. Since the organizers of that festival were well-known to my father, my first concert took place!
A.I.R: Who played pakkavaadyam (accompaniment) for your first concert?
Madurai Mani Iyer: Nattam Seetharama Iyer, who lived in Kumbakonam, played the Violin. Tiruvaarur Kunju Iyer alias Rajagopala Iyer played the mridangam.
A.I.R: How old were you then ?
Madurai Mani Iyer: I was 12 years old then.
A.I.R: So you started performing from then?
Madurai Mani Iyer: Yes I started performing from then on.
A.I.R: In order to get so many concert opportunities at that age itself, you must have had help is in it?
Madurai Mani Iyer: What helped me was my paternal uncle, Pushpavanam Iyer, had been so famous that people who had listened to his music would readily agree to hold my concert if someone recommended my name.
Madurai Mani Iyer: My only responsibility was to perform well in the concert that had been arranged. Getting the concert opportunity itself wasnt very difficult. Had to perform well in the arranged concert, thats all. It would make things even easier.
A.I.R: Then, as you got older, your voice would have changed.
Madurai Mani Iyer: Yes, my voice changed. When I first sang concerts, I used to sing to a shruti of 5 kattai, 4.5 kattai. My voice (shaareeram) used to be very facile. Later, my voice dropped in shruti, way down to 1 kattai. It all happened quite rapidly in the space of 2 months. And even at 1 kattai, my voice could only reach the taara Shadja for the highs and the madhya Shadja for the lows.
A.I.R: A range of only 1 sthaayi (Octave)?
Madurai Mani Iyer: 1 sthaayi, exactly, effectively thats all it would speak (!) Singing higher than the taara Shadja was difficult, and so was singing below the madhya Shadja. Hence I was constrained to sing within 1 sthaayi at that time.
A.I.R: So you must have done a lot of saadhakam at that time to get a handle on your voice and strengthen it.
Madurai Mani Iyer: I practised for about 3 hours everyday with the tamburaa.
A.I.R: How did you practice then ?
Madurai Mani Iyer: I used to set the shruti high and then try to hold the taara Shadja which used to be difficult, but I would practice this for a while, I would take a suitable raga and practice the phrases D N S, P D N S, M P D N S etc, along with the proper bhaavam of the raaga, in order to try and strengthen the Shadja then I would proceed upward to halt on R and then take a look at G and then try M. I only managed to reach the M this way. Then I would lower the shruti to 2.5, 2, kattai and sing the high notes a little easier, and then move to 1.5 kattai and sing with even more ease. I Had to practice really hard, had to sing open-throated and practice hard to bring the voice into shape.
A.I.R: In your career, you must have heard the concerts of a lot of vidvaans. can you talk about it a little bit ?
Madurai Mani Iyer: In Madurai, I have heard a lot of concerts of Mazhavaraayanendal Subbarama Bhagavatar. Harikesanallur Muthiah Bhagavatar, I have heard a lot of his musical discoures he also used to perform concerts, in his performances, there would be a lot of Tyagaraja compositions and other great pieces, the discourses would be very musical.
Also in Madurai, there was Nagaswami Bhagavatarvaal who sang a lot of Tyagaraja kritis in his concerts. He would not repeat the kritis he sang from concert to concert in the many concerts I heard! I had a great opportunity to listen to a lot of different kritis of Tyagaraja, all those in vogue as well as many rare ones. he was a disciple of the Walajapet Venkataramana Bhagavatar, a prime disciple of Tyagaraja.
I have heard concerts of Karaikkudi Brothers with Dakshinamurti Pillai on the mrdangam, Kancheepuram Naina Pillai, with Malaikottai Govindaswami Pillai on Violin and Dakshinamurti Pillai on Mridangam etc.
I have heard lots and lots of concerts of Ariyakudi Ramanuja Iyengar & Maharajapuram Viswanatha Iyer.
Then I have listened to Veena Dhanammal. And I have listened to lots of performances of great naagasvara vidvaans during temple festivals, and night processions staying up all night long and walking behind them.
A.I.R: What is your opinion of current performance methods ?
Madurai Mani Iyer: The Current performance methods setup by various senior musicians of our time and their aesthetics, I must say I like it and hold it in high regard. And I try to proceed along that route as much as possible.
A.I.R: What is your opinion regarding shruti ?
Madurai Mani Iyer: You mean setting an aadhaara shruti (base shruthi) it should be set such that the taara Shadja is easy to reach not too easy however otherwise it would be floating and fragile. It should not be too easy, if you hold the taara Shadja in an extended manner i.e. kaarvai, you should be able to hold it with firmness and strength, without tiring. Only then you would be able to sing the further higher notes like R, G, M, easily and attuned to shruti. A lot of musical phrasing, in our current music, is in the upper reaches. These are also the notes that are heard with clarity and which grab the peoples attention. If you sing in the lower octave, people nearby can hear it clearly and only knowledgeable rasikas would like it.
However, we are required to sing a lot in the upper octave these days, and for that one should not tire. Even though there are mikes and speakers these days, one should be careful not to tire, since otherwise you would slip from the shruti. if that happens, your singing will not be fulfilling or pleasing. And if you dont satisfy the listeners with your singing in that range, then there is no point in singing in the lower reaches either, having lost their attention.
The aadhaara Shadja should also be held well and with firmness. Even if you are only able to intone the lower N D P in a soft manner, thats OK. B ut the taara Shadja is very important, it should be held with strength and firmness.
A.I.R: In singing svaras, i.e. kalpanaasvaras, you seem to have a unique style could you let us know about the evolution of your style?
Madurai Mani Iyer: Unique style? Really not. Mazhavaraayanendal Subbarama Bhagavatar used to sing svaras like this. When I was a student and a novice performer, I have heard a lot of his music he used to sing svaras even for many rare raagas, his sarvalaghu manner of svara singing used to be very good. I tried to sing like that and develop my svara singing, my style is a direct outgrowth of that.
A.I.R: Thanks for that information. In svara singing, people sing tisram, misram, etc. what is your opinion on this arithmetic (kaNakku)?
Madurai Mani Iyer: As long as the raga bhaavam is not spoiled, there is nothing wrong in singing arithmetic swara prasthara with thisra, misra etc. If the voice admits of this exercise, and if the arithmetic is also interesting, then there is no problem at all. We can all be happy and enjoy.
People who are well-qualified only should attempt it. Everyone need not feel a compulsion to engage in this. If we do arithmetic, troubling ourselves, losing raga bhaavam and losing the shruti also in the process, there is no point. The sukha bhaavam in the cutcheri would be lost. Without losing sight of the overall sukha bhaavam and the raaga bhaavam, when someone who is intelligent, has a strong memory and has had good association with laya vidvaans, does this arithmetic, then we also can enjoy it and appreciate it.
A.I.R: What advice do you have for the youngsters who are learning music and desire to perform, and others who have just begun to perform ?
Madurai Mani Iyer: They should hear many concerts of the senior vidvaans, ie the established vidvaans. Because, however much they are talented, since they lack the experience, their music will not be sufficient or fulfilling. They should observe how the senior vidvaans make their concerts a success and please all varieties of listeners, how they use their voices in a concert hall, how they employ the various thick and thin shades in their voices, how they plan their concerts, these are all to be learnt only by direct observation. It does not happen otherwise, however well one sings by themselves or practices their music.
They have to hear the senior vidvaans over and over again, no other way. But, they dont have to imitate them. It will all jell together over time as they keep singing, and hearing the senior vidvaans attentively.
They should pay sufficient attention to setting the shruti before singing. They should give sufficient time to the accompanists to adjust their instruments to the shruti. Before proceeding to sing, they should attune themselves to the shruti by intoning Sa-Pa-Sa in a manner audible just to themselves. Steadying themselves thus, if they sing, there would be no problem. If in the midst of a concert, the shruti drifts, they should adjust it properly and then only should continue. If the shruti wavers, sukha bhaavamm will be lost, the felicity will be lost. The more and more we are attuned to shruti, the easier the music will flow. Hence one must pay great attention to it.
A.I.R: Thanks very much for sharing your experiences and your pointers to all aspiring musicians. Namaskaaram.
Madurai Mani Iyer: Namaskaaram!

I am not sure whether tis interview is already posted here...
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Re: Madurai Mani Iyer

#794  Postby N.R.Patanjali » 09 May 2012 21:12

Sir,

Post 789 : Yes it was at Sankara Gurukulam, Abhiramapuram.

Post 793 : A part of it is posted in the website Gaana kalaadara Madurai Mani Iyer. But, this is a full version.
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Re: Madurai Mani Iyer

#795  Postby N.R.Patanjali » 09 May 2012 21:15

sir,

The concert at Ayodhya mandapam, west mambalam is available for download at sangeethapriya.org
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Re: Madurai Mani Iyer

#796  Postby annamalai » 10 May 2012 00:00

I read that the 1966 concert recording was juiced up :-) for the listening session. The quality of the audio version in circulation is not so great. Would it be possible to post the upgraded audio of that concert. Thx.
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AIR interview of Madurai Mani Iyer

#797  Postby ranjanimalavi » 11 May 2012 13:36

Don't know whether it was already posted.

Following is a translation of an Interview given by Shri Madurai Mani Iyer to All India Radio (A.I.R) recorded during early 60s. Seniors who heard him those days may enjoy this even more !

A.I.R: Namaskaaram. I would like to record your reminiscences about your gurukulavaasam. Whom you did study with at the very beginning ?
Madurai Mani Iyer: I learnt under Shri Rajam Bhagavathar in Madurai

A.I.R: Whose Disciple was Rajam Bhagavathar?
Madurai Mani Iyer: He was a disciple of Ettayapuram Ramachandra Bhagavatar. My Paternal uncle Madurai Pushpavanam Iyer and the nagaswara vidwan Madurai Ponnuswami pillai, were also disciples of Ramachandra Bhagavathar.

A.I.R: How long would you have learnt from Rajam Bhagavatar and when did you start performing ?
Madurai Mani Iyer: I learnt for 2 years from him. We lived in a portion of his house itself on rent. So, it was very convenient to learn from Rajam Bhagavathar.

Madurai Mani Iyer: After that, Harikesanallur Muthiah Bhagavatar established a music school in Madurai in which Rajam Bhagavatar was appointed as a teacher. So I happened to join that school. I learnt there too for about a year and a half. After that I started performing in concerts.

A.I.R: Can you recollect your very first concert where ?
Madurai Mani Iyer: I had been to the Sivagangai area along with my father who had friends there. My first concert was held there, in a place called Alavaakottai, during the kumbhaabhishekam festival. Since the organizers of that festival were well-known to my father, my first concert took place!

A.I.R: Who played pakkavaadyam (accompaniment) for your first concert?
Madurai Mani Iyer: Nattam Seetharama Iyer, who lived in Kumbakonam, played the Violin. Tiruvaarur Kunju Iyer alias Rajagopala Iyer played the mridangam.

A.I.R: How old were you then ?
Madurai Mani Iyer: I was 12 years old then.

A.I.R: So you started performing from then?
Madurai Mani Iyer: Yes I started performing from then on.

A.I.R: In order to get so many concert opportunities at that age itself, you must have had help is in it?
Madurai Mani Iyer: What helped me was my paternal uncle, Pushpavanam Iyer, had been so famous that people who had listened to his music would readily agree to hold my concert if someone recommended my name.
Madurai Mani Iyer: My only responsibility was to perform well in the concert that had been arranged. Getting the concert opportunity itself wasnt very difficult. Had to perform well in the arranged concert, thats all. It would make things even easier.

A.I.R: Then, as you got older, your voice would have changed.
Madurai Mani Iyer: Yes, my voice changed. When I first sang concerts, I used to sing to a shruti of 5 kattai, 4.5 kattai. My voice (shaareeram) used to be very facile. Later, my voice dropped in shruti, way down to 1 kattai. It all happened quite rapidly in the space of 2 months. And even at 1 kattai, my voice could only reach the taara Shadja for the highs and the madhya Shadja for the lows.

A.I.R: A range of only 1 sthaayi (Octave)?
Madurai Mani Iyer: 1 sthaayi, exactly, effectively thats all it would speak (!) Singing higher than the taara Shadja was difficult, and so was singing below the madhya Shadja. Hence I was constrained to sing within 1 sthaayi at that time.

A.I.R: So you must have done a lot of saadhakam at that time to get a handle on your voice and strengthen it.
Madurai Mani Iyer: I practised for about 3 hours everyday with the tamburaa.

A.I.R: How did you practice then ?
Madurai Mani Iyer: I used to set the shruti high and then try to hold the taara Shadja which used to be difficult, but I would practice this for a while, I would take a suitable raga and practice the phrases D N S, P D N S, M P D N S etc, along with the proper bhaavam of the raaga, in order to try and strengthen the Shadja then I would proceed upward to halt on R and then take a look at G and then try M. I only managed to reach the M this way. Then I would lower the shruti to 2.5, 2, kattai and sing the high notes a little easier, and then move to 1.5 kattai and sing with even more ease. I Had to practice really hard, had to sing open-throated and practice hard to bring the voice into shape.

A.I.R: In your career, you must have heard the concerts of a lot of vidvaans. can you talk about it a little bit ?
Madurai Mani Iyer: In Madurai, I have heard a lot of concerts of Mazhavaraayanendal Subbarama Bhagavatar. Harikesanallur Muthiah Bhagavatar, I have heard a lot of his musical discoures he also used to perform concerts, in his performances, there would be a lot of Tyagaraja compositions and other great pieces, the discourses would be very musical.
Also in Madurai, there was Nagaswami Bhagavatarvaal who sang a lot of Tyagaraja kritis in his concerts. He would not repeat the kritis he sang from concert to concert in the many concerts I heard! I had a great opportunity to listen to a lot of different kritis of Tyagaraja, all those in vogue as well as many rare ones. he was a disciple of the Walajapet Venkataramana Bhagavatar, a prime disciple of Tyagaraja.
I have heard concerts of Karaikkudi Brothers with Dakshinamurti Pillai on the mrdangam, Kancheepuram Naina Pillai, with Malaikottai Govindaswami Pillai on Violin and Dakshinamurti Pillai on Mridangam etc.
I have heard lots and lots of concerts of Ariyakudi Ramanuja Iyengar & Maharajapuram Viswanatha Iyer.
Then I have listened to Veena Dhanammal. And I have listened to lots of performances of great naagasvara vidvaans during temple festivals, and night processions staying up all night long and walking behind them.

A.I.R: What is your opinion of current performance methods ?
Madurai Mani Iyer: The Current performance methods setup by various senior musicians of our time and their aesthetics, I must say I like it and hold it in high regard. And I try to proceed along that route as much as possible.

A.I.R: What is your opinion regarding shruti ?
Madurai Mani Iyer: You mean setting an aadhaara shruti (base shruthi) it should be set such that the taara Shadja is easy to reach not too easy however otherwise it would be floating and fragile. It should not be too easy, if you hold the taara Shadja in an extended manner i.e. kaarvai, you should be able to hold it with firmness and strength, without tiring. Only then you would be able to sing the further higher notes like R, G, M, easily and attuned to shruti. A lot of musical phrasing, in our current music, is in the upper reaches. These are also the notes that are heard with clarity and which grab the peoples attention. If you sing in the lower octave, people nearby can hear it clearly and only knowledgeable rasikas would like it.
However, we are required to sing a lot in the upper octave these days, and for that one should not tire. Even though there are mikes and speakers these days, one should be careful not to tire, since otherwise you would slip from the shruti. if that happens, your singing will not be fulfilling or pleasing. And if you dont satisfy the listeners with your singing in that range, then there is no point in singing in the lower reaches either, having lost their attention.
The aadhaara Shadja should also be held well and with firmness. Even if you are only able to intone the lower N D P in a soft manner, thats OK. B ut the taara Shadja is very important, it should be held with strength and firmness.

A.I.R: In singing svaras, i.e. kalpanaasvaras, you seem to have a unique style could you let us know about the evolution of your style?
Madurai Mani Iyer: Unique style? Really not. Mazhavaraayanendal Subbarama Bhagavatar used to sing svaras like this. When I was a student and a novice performer, I have heard a lot of his music he used to sing svaras even for many rare raagas, his sarvalaghu manner of svara singing used to be very good. I tried to sing like that and develop my svara singing, my style is a direct outgrowth of that.

A.I.R: Thanks for that information. In svara singing, people sing tisram, misram, etc. what is your opinion on this arithmetic (kaNakku)?
Madurai Mani Iyer: As long as the raga bhaavam is not spoiled, there is nothing wrong in singing arithmetic swara prasthara with thisra, misra etc. If the voice admits of this exercise, and if the arithmetic is also interesting, then there is no problem at all. We can all be happy and enjoy.
People who are well-qualified only should attempt it. Everyone need not feel a compulsion to engage in this. If we do arithmetic, troubling ourselves, losing raga bhaavam and losing the shruti also in the process, there is no point. The sukha bhaavam in the cutcheri would be lost. Without losing sight of the overall sukha bhaavam and the raaga bhaavam, when someone who is intelligent, has a strong memory and has had good association with laya vidvaans, does this arithmetic, then we also can enjoy it and appreciate it.

A.I.R: What advice do you have for the youngsters who are learning music and desire to perform, and others who have just begun to perform ?
Madurai Mani Iyer: They should hear many concerts of the senior vidvaans, ie the established vidvaans. Because, however much they are talented, since they lack the experience, their music will not be sufficient or fulfilling. They should observe how the senior vidvaans make their concerts a success and please all varieties of listeners, how they use their voices in a concert hall, how they employ the various thick and thin shades in their voices, how they plan their concerts, these are all to be learnt only by direct observation. It does not happen otherwise, however well one sings by themselves or practices their music.
They have to hear the senior vidvaans over and over again, no other way. But, they dont have to imitate them. It will all jell together over time as they keep singing, and hearing the senior vidvaans attentively.
They should pay sufficient attention to setting the shruti before singing. They should give sufficient time to the accompanists to adjust their instruments to the shruti. Before proceeding to sing, they should attune themselves to the shruti by intoning Sa-Pa-Sa in a manner audible just to themselves. Steadying themselves thus, if they sing, there would be no problem. If in the midst of a concert, the shruti drifts, they should adjust it properly and then only should continue. If the shruti wavers, sukha bhaavamm will be lost, the felicity will be lost. The more and more we are attuned to shruti, the easier the music will flow. Hence one must pay great attention to it.

A.I.R: Thanks very much for sharing your experiences and your pointers to all aspiring musicians. Namaskaaram.

Madurai Mani Iyer: Namaskaaram!
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Re: Madurai Mani Iyer

#798  Postby ranjanimalavi » 11 May 2012 13:37

Sorry I didn't refresh the page before posting, as its already there.

Raman
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Re: Madurai Mani Iyer

#799  Postby cacm » 19 May 2012 23:56

PLEASE SEE POST #S 20-22 UNDER VIDWANS& VIDUSHIS-" MMI CENTENARY CELEBRATIONS OCT28,2012 CHENNAI"SUB SECTION for CLEVELAND ARADHANA 2012 MMI MUSICAL TRIBUTES COVERAGE
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MMI & Swara Raga Sudha

#800  Postby perarulalan » 23 May 2012 18:57

Dear Balu Sir / Prof. VKV / Venu Sir,
Has Shri MMI sung Swara Raga Sudha in Sankarabharanam, in any of his concerts? If so, any chance that there is a recording???

Thanks and Regards
Perarulalan
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