Recreating season's magic

There couldn’t have been a better welcome for Delhi’s monsoon. A recent musical event in the Capital saw the mystical aura of rains unfold as melodic notes poured, decorated with the mesmerising beauty of Indian classical music.

In its 12th year, Barkha Ritu, the only National thematic music festival on the monsoon raags, saw the iconic performances of Ustad Shujaat Khan – noted sitar player and son and disciple of the legendary sitar maestro Ustad Vilayat Khan – and Prasanna (who is revered for revolutionising Indian Carnatic music on an electric guitar) in a special duo concert. Accompanying them were Amit Choubey on tabla and Prapancham Ravindran on mridangam.

While the evening unfolded with a shower of tuneful raags, the soothing solo performance by Prasanna, accompanied by Ravindaran, engulfed the audience as their hands danced and applauded the artist who was playing the monsoon ragas Amritvarshini and Varnapriya for the first time. Ustad Shujaat Khan’s solo with Amit Choubey took the audience into the depths of charms that Indian classical music reverberates with. Amidst humour and Ghalib’s poetry, music lovers could be seen intently watching the humble maestro’s fingers weave magic on the traditional instrument.

As if the rain gods hadn’t already been swaying to the divine music, the four icons came together during the last part of the evening to evoke the season’s atmosphere. Noted Indian classical vocalist Rita Ganguly was also present among the audience and was evidently moved by the performances. “Shujaat was just outstanding. Prasanna was also great during his part. Both are very different and do not really gel. Humans work where robots cannot,” she said, referring to the technical equipment involved with Prasanna’s guitar.

“We have heard Prasanna for the first time and it is a great experience. It is great to see such young artists take up classical music in a unique style,” shared Pratap Malhotra, a music aficionado who has keen interest in classical music and has been attending music concerts regularly.

The evening also saw the spell-binding performance of legendary Indian classical singer Pandit Channulal Mishra along with his son and other disciples. Pandit Channulal Mishra is a well-known exponent of the Kirana gharana of Indian classical music, especially the Khayal and the Purab Ang Gayaki – Thumri.

Rains have truly brought a lot of music this time around. The melodious evening gave a chance to soak in the delights of Indian classical music.

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