A doll like, tho-ugh pleasingly little plump boy yet to enter into his teens, Vishnu, belied all that his name connotes and enthralled the audience at Ravindra Kalakshetra with his crisp and eloquent Bharatanatyam on Sunday.
Veteran exponent of Bharatanatyam V P Dhananjayan who along with his wife Shantha Dhananjayan was the chief guest appropriately showered all praise upon him for his performance which was marked by total confidence and conviction. He did proud to his versatile and prolific Guru Padmini Ramachandran with his crisp stage presence and lively deliveries.
Vishnu P Nair’s art was a filigree of light and energy held together by an intuitive and intellectual understanding of time and space and behind it all was the biggest achievement of all that of the true hard worker.
With Guru Padmini Ramachandran’s inspiring nattuvanga, Nandakumar’s rich voice for song, Narasimhamurthy and Natarajamurthy’s sonourous playing of the violin and flute, Janaradhan Rao’s expert playing of the mridanga and Prasannakumar’s rhythms Vishnu had little problem in adding the vibrant and lingering scene of his art to the performance.
He began with the traditional Pushpanjali, Ganesha vandana (Paahi maam Vighneshwaram), depiction of Ardhanareeshwara and alarippu (khanda and mishra). The brisk and intricate jathis aptly appropriated with varieties of aduvus opened up a cascade of nimble nritta. He went through the pure dance sequences of Harikambhoji jathiswara with a mechanical precision and artistic finish.
The Kalyani varna Gokula baala Gopiya lola with its Krishna theme well suited the dancing lad. The most familiar incidents of Krishna’s leelas were neatly reenacted by Vishnu. The crisp and taut rounds of jathis he showed his mettle in nritta, whether it was basics like mandi aduvus or the complex whirls of the surral aduvus. His Bharatanatyam spared no quarter for present day tastes too. The interesting teermanas, special consideration for covering stage space in long strides and un-hyped or unexaggerated histrionics.
Welcome Music Federation: Different music sabhas coming together to protect the interest and ensure a healthy progress of the classical Carnatic music under the name of Sangeetha Prathisthana (Music Federation) augurs well and a welcome idea too. That more than ten Sabhas have come forward to enter into this fold is heartening to note. Coming together is the beginning, being together is the progress and working together is the success. I wish the latter for ever to happen. Khanjari expert C P Vyasavittala and flautist B K Anantharam need to be complemented for this bold and right step taken. The Prathisthana was inaugurated on Friday at Sri Rama Mandira, Malleshwara.
It was also a good idea to make it a meaningful beginning by having a three day music conference. An adept scholar and a seasoned singer young Dr Srikantham Nagendra Sastry has been presiding over the music conference to be conferred with the title of Naada Vidya Nidhi.
Inner creative spirit: The formal inauguration was followed by an edifying vocal recital by Dr Srikantham Nagendra Sastry in the enriching company of Ganeshkumar (violin), Arjun Kumar (mridanga) and C P Vyasavittala (khanjari). Sai Ganesh Sastry and Anoop Krishna lent vocal support. The recital once again held up the candle to the time-tested norm of Indian classical music — it belongs only to the true sadhaka. Nagendra Sastry’s views and philosophy of his art form are clear and self expressive. He sang to himself and in complete self absorption. I remember him for the unbroken unison with the inner creative spirit he established while singing.
His treatment, method and mode of movement, notes of accent and rest and by virtue of that in their impact and atmosphere lent authentic classicism and traditional glory to his renditions.
He opened with a fine Gowrimanohari piece Guruleka etuvanti. Another Thyagaraja krithi Undedi Ramudu set to Harikambhoji was beautifully sensitive. The technical posture of His Poorvikalyani for Saati leni (Ponnaiah Pillai, with a succinct alapana) and the adjoining neraval and swaraprastara was unimpeachably correct.