Gayaki through violins

Gayaki through violins

Violinist Dr N. Rajam, Padma Bhushan recently performed along with her family

The audience was mesmerised and left in a trance when the violins played by three generations fell silent.

In an environment overflowing with flowers and fragrance, Dr N. Rajam, recipient of Padma Bhushan along with daughter Dr Sangeeta Shankar and grand daughters Ragini and Nandini, performed magically. Dr N. Rajam and family were in Delhi to perform at VSK Baithak - which is known to introduce to its learned rasiks the best of talent from the world of Hindustani Classical music and also Purab Ang Gayaki.

The atmosphere at the Baithak was similar to that in a temple where music is revered. As one took off one’s shoes to enter the WWF auditorium where this Baithak was held, one was enthralled by the sheer number of flowers that formed the backdrop of the stage. Decorated handsomely with a profusion of marigolds and roses it was a sight in itself and soon the eminent performers became a part of the spiritual setup with their mellifluous chords.

The performance by the family quartet was from another world. “Being a bowed instrument, violin is most suitable for vocal music. All one needs to have is a good sense of swar to understand the instrument,” shared Dr Rajam.

Says Sangeeta, “It is a tradition in our family to start learning violin from the age of three.” Her daughters Ragini and Nandini are justifiably proud to be part of such a family.

The older one Ragini who is also a mechanical engineer says, “We are fortunate to have been brought up in a family where all the education relating to the violin was readily available to us. People search the world for this traditional art and rarely find such amazing gurus. We are lucky to have been born in this family.”

The jugalbandi between the young sisters was thoroughly enjoyed by all. Both the sisters started learning the art much before they were aware of it. Do they regret having missed out on all the fun their peers may have been part of, and they had to forego to learn the violin? “Not at all. We feel we were lucky to have picked it up then because when people start learning violin at a later stage, they are often disappointed with the hard work and struggle that it requires but for us, that stage never came because by the time we became conscious of what we were learning, we had already crossed the first stage of learning,” says Nandini, currently studying to be a CA.

VSK Baithaks are the public face of a personal passion of an individual named Vinod Kapur. He started these baithaks around 1998, as a kind of an experiment of presenting music in an informal and personalised format, completely different from the manner in which classical music is performed and heard in the auditorium. During the course of its journey, there have been about 70 VSK Baithaks, featuring both renowned and upcoming artistes.

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