BANGALORE: The annual Sri Rama Navami season has begun. The Vasantha Navarathri which starts on the Ugadi day (this year March 23) concludes on the Sri Rama Navami day, the day on which Sri Rama incarnated (April 1).
A few maths and temples celebrate Rama Navami during this Vasantha Navarathri. Sri Rama Mandira, East Park road, Malleshwaram is doing so and the music programs in connection with Sri Ramotsava that began from March 23.
Seasoned flautist Geetha Gopal is one of the few female flute artistes who are admired by the rasikas. She has a good control over her breath and her Vidwath is correctly channelised. Her laya grip is also noteworthy.
Accompanied by CS Usha (violin), TN Ramesh (mridanga) and Shadagopalan (khanjari), Geetha excelled in all the departments of her cutcheri. A purist that she is, she maintained the correctness of the ragas throughout without falling in the trap of gimmickry. Her Hamsadhwani (Raghunayaka) was a fine opener. The swaras warmed up the atmosphere.
A crisp Nalinakanthi (Manavyalaginchara) was followed by a pleasing delineation of Malayamarutha for ‘Manasayetuloni’. She rounded off the number by attaching swaras to ‘Kalilo’. Ramabhakti (Bangala) and Bantureeti (Hamsanada) in lively tempo set the moods to listen to a refined Reetigowla (Janani ninnuvina). Likewise the expansion in Kambhoji (Sri Raghuvara) vouched for Geetha’s instrumental abilities.
The 12th Sri Ramanavami sangeetotsava 2012 started on March 23 at Sri Raghavendra Math adjacent to the above Ramamandira. An outstanding vocalist Vinaya Sharva exhibited his enormous expertise in singing Hamsadhwani (Gam Ganapathe), Arabhi (Koluvaiyunnade), Kamavardhini (Sadaa enna hrudayadalli, with neraval and swaras at Ninna naanu) and Abheri (Bhaja re) were draped in his vivid and varied manodharma. Gaiety and pleasantness marked the detailing of Kharaharapriya (Pakkalanilabadi), Shuddha Saranga (Manave) and others. Nalina Mohan (violin), Shivu (mridanga) and Vyasavitthala (khanjari) imparted a lively support.
A meritorious singer CK Pavandeep’s concentration (Wednesday) on swara and correctness of ragas was commendable. The notes were clear and resonant and even more praiseworthy was his sense of proportion. Aptly supported by Govindaswamy (violin) and Anand (mridanga), Pavan gave out his best in the detailed treatment extended to Todi (Enu dhanyalo), Harikambhoji (Dinamani), Shuddha Dhanyasi (Narayana ninna) and Kalyani(Nija daasa varada). He retained the listeners throughout with his ingenuous talents. The singing of Rogahara (Bagesri), a Marathi abhanga and Hanumanamatha (Sumanasaranjini) was an exceptional experience.
A promising Bharatanatya dancer Aishwarya V. trained by a seasoned Guru Vandya Srinath gave a good account of herself in her performance held at the ADA Rangamandira on Sunday. Though she needs to perfect her ardhamandalis, she exuded confidence and went through the compositions with conviction. The opening Kauvthuvam and mishra alarippu, she comfortably executed the shiro and nayanabedhas. Her nritta blossomed in a raising speed. The Vasantha jathiswara showcased a beautiful juxtaposition of aduvus, jathis and swaras. A traditional shabda showed her abhinaya skill. The Sriranjani varna (Swami nee manamerangi) addressed to Lord Shanmugha was neatly expounded and her nritta, nrithya and abhinaya radiated with a comprehensive artistry. The greatness and beauty of the Lotus-eyed Goddess was visualised on the basis of Kanjadalaayatakshi (Kamalamanohari). Guru Vandya Srinath(nattuvanga), Karthik Hebbar (vocal), Venugopal (flute), Janardhan (mridanga) and others were the invigorating accompanists.
Adapting medieval Kannada poetry into a dance feature is a demanding task. Guru BK Shyamprakash and BK Vasanthalakshmi of Keshava Nrithya Shala did well in choreographing Kumara Sambhavam (Kannada translation by Parameshwara Bhat of Kalidasa’s Sanskrit work) and presenting it on last Saturday at Ravindra Kalakshetra.
The tale of the birth of Shanmugha was the theme. Distressed by the destructive activities of demon Tarakaasura the Devathas seek Lord Vishnu’s refuge. Vishnu suggests that a son born to Lord Shiva and Parvathi could destroy Taarkaasura. Successful attempts are made to unite Shiva and Parvathi. The story was developed in six scenes. Traditional props and settings, elaborate costumes, orientation of Carnatic music, judicious selection of lyrics and a carefully planned recorded music enriched the dance feature. Delay in between the scenes could have been avoided.