R K Srikantan - Edison, NJ Concert - April 28, 2012

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R K Srikantan - Edison, NJ Concert - April 28, 2012

Postby Ramaprasad » 30 Apr 2012, 01:55

R. K. Srikantan (Vocal)
R. S. Ramakanth (Vocal Support)
Sandhya Anand (Violin)
Kumar Kanthan (Mridangam)
Sriram Ramesh (Kanjira)

1-Viribhoni_Varnam_Kedaragowla_Misra Jhampa. Rudrapatna Venkataramaiah
2-Vara Siddhi Vinayakam_Natai_Rupaka. Ambi Dikshitar [S]
3-Divakara Tanujam_Yadhukula Kambhoji_Adi. M. Dikshitar
4-Ninnu Cheppa Kaaranamemi_Mandari_Adi. Patnam Subramania Iyer [A, S]
5-Sogasu Juda_Kannadagowla_Rupaka. Thyagaraja
6-O Rajivaksha_Arabhi_M/Chapu. Thyagaraja [A]
7-Entamudho_Bindumalini_Adi. Thyagaraja
8-Enagu ANe ranga Ninagu ANe_Kedara_Adi. Purandaradasa
9-Enduku Dayaradadura_Todi_M/Chapu. Thyagaraja [A, N, S. Thani]
Neraval at Jagela Idi Samaya
10-Eccharike_Mohana-Misra Gati. Purandaradasa
11-Na Donkadhare_Desh_Adi. Purandaradasa
12-Khandu Dhanyana_Behag_Adi. Kamalesha Vittaladasa [A]
13-Thillana_Kanada_Rupaka. Poochi Srinivasa Iyengar

April 28, 2012
I thought R. K. Srikantan’s concert that followed his receiving the Sangeetha Sagara Award from CMANA (please see Vidwans and Vidushis section) should not fade into musical history without a few words here. For want of originality on my part, I have to borrow from Shakespeare and use his words in ways to describe my impressions of this concert and Srikantan’s singing – “Age cannot wither him, nor custom stale his infinite variety. He makes us want more of his music, where most he satisfies”

A glance at the kriti list mirrors his broad repertoire as also his deep roots in classicism. Though a part of his musical lineage is traceable to Thyagaraja, the course of his musical life has been a personal interaction with the stalwarts of this time. That it has molded his musical thoughts is evident every time one listens to his music. He is truly a confluence of many musical streams and the concert experience of a student like myself is as if I have visited many universities of learning in one single tour.

The concert started with the rare varnam of Rudrapatnam Venkataramaiah in Kedaragowla. After a prayer to Vinayaka, the kriti Divakara Tanujam was no surprise, being Saturday. The Mandari kriti of Patnam Subramania was rendered with the right touch of voice and vivacity to be truly musically moving. This is purely personal, but listening to the Mandari varnam of Vasudevachar of the Patnam school has a similar emotional response from me.

The pieces that followed reflected his own musical roots influenced greatly by the Thyagaraja lineage. Kannadagowla and Arabhi, and the main raga (Todi) were rendered with an authenticity that could serve the younger generation as models of kriti rendition.

Having tuned many devaranamas in his long musical career, the audience expects him to sing a few of these and it was not disappointed. Being influenced by Ariakudi and Musri in his musical life, I am guessing that Khandu Dhanyana in Behag and the Poochi Thillana in Kanada were homages to the Poochi-Ariakudi musical lineage.

Ramakanth, as a co-vocalist (permit me this new term), was a musical support to Srikantan in the best way possible. Being a vocalist in his own right, nurtured in the Srikantan tradition, it is a symbiosis of two talents on stage, contributing to a great musical experience. The voice and the musical zest of the vocalists produced a musical aura that was easily seething into the audience.

The relatively young (agewise!) accompanists did a great job to support the Ocean of Music they were on stage with. They are all talented ‘local’ artists who are enriching the musical life of these shores. Sandhya’s violin respectfully followed the music of the senior artist. Her violin playing has a great musical timbre, her imagination equal to the occasion and she pulled off a grahabhedham adeptly, following the volcalists. Kumar Kanthan’s mridangam support was measured and meted out in the right way. Sriram on the kanjira played his collaborative role equally well.

I want to conclude this short essay of my impressions of this evening with the words of Tagore that might apply to Srikantan as well – “… today well lived makes every yesterday a dream of happiness, and every tomorrow a vision of hope.” Srikantan is living everyone of his ‘today’ to the fullest extent, making us the beneficiary of his enormous musical virtuosity.
Last edited by Ramaprasad on 30 Apr 2012, 08:12, edited 2 times in total.

Sreeni Rajarao
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Joined: 04 Feb 2010, 08:19

Re: R K Srikantan - Edison, NJ Concert - April 28, 2012

Postby Sreeni Rajarao » 30 Apr 2012, 03:13

Thank you for your report!

Just reading your report was a treat!

Even as I just glanced at the song list, I started wishing for a recording of this concert.

We are indeed fortunate that Sri Srikantan is actively performing for the benefit of us, rasika-s.

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Joined: 03 Feb 2010, 09:02

Re: R K Srikantan - Edison, NJ Concert - April 28, 2012

Postby bilahari » 30 Apr 2012, 06:59

What a lovely review! Thank you, Ramaprasad! This kEdAragowLa varNam is new to me - I've only learnt and heard of sAmi dayajUDa.

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Joined: 03 Feb 2010, 08:04

Re: R K Srikantan - Edison, NJ Concert - April 28, 2012

Postby rajeshnat » 30 Apr 2012, 07:18

Lovely review , liked the quote of tagore which is very apt. The kedaram krithi of PD is new to me

Sreeni Rajarao
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Joined: 04 Feb 2010, 08:19

Re: R K Srikantan - Edison, NJ Concert - April 28, 2012

Postby Sreeni Rajarao » 30 Apr 2012, 07:36


Was song # 8 in the rAga kEdAra "enagu ANe ranga ninagu ANe?

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Joined: 12 Jun 2006, 08:43

Re: R K Srikantan - Edison, NJ Concert - April 28, 2012

Postby Ramaprasad » 30 Apr 2012, 08:09

Thanks, Gentlemen, for your kind words. You are right, Mr. Raja Rao. A friend of mine also wrote to me about #8. I have corrected it. It was great a concert from an iconic musician.

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Joined: 22 Jun 2006, 09:30

Re: R K Srikantan - Edison, NJ Concert - April 28, 2012

Postby arasi » 30 Apr 2012, 08:15

A beautiful review about a beautiful concert.
Every minute of listening to R.K.Srikantan I feel, is a gift. His presence and his presentation brings to us all that he has garnered from the masters and also from his own hard-earned treasure. My heart is filled with music when I walk out of the hall after his concert, so moved by what I had heard that evening. May he bring to us many more concerts, that MarkandEYa! PraNAms to him...

Some of us used to frown about how musicians from Karnataka are not that well-known outside of the state--how we get to hear hear only a few of their concerts in Chennai. It seems as though things are changing for the better.

I see that there are more concert reviews from Bengaluru than Chennai the past few weeks. That means, rasikAs are actively attending concerts--all good signs!

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Joined: 03 Feb 2010, 13:33

Re: R K Srikantan - Edison, NJ Concert - April 28, 2012

Postby girish_a » 01 May 2012, 13:40

Thank you, Ramprasad, for such a beautiful review! I read this review multiple times :)

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