Divine music enthrals all

Divine music enthrals all

Manodharma Sangeetotsava’, the fifth annual music festival presented by Bharatiya Saamagaana Sabha, had its grand finale over the weekend.

The event, held at Chowdaiah Memorial Hall, had a great crowd on the last two days as hundreds of classical music-lovers turned up to witness the live performances of their favourite artistes. While on the second last day, the legendary Carnatic vocalist Dr M Balamuralikrishna took the stage, there were a host of music related events on the last day. 

The hall was packed with people standing on the sides to witness one of the most senior Carnatic artistes Dr M Balamuralikrishna live in performance on the second last day of the festival.

He was ably assisted by Krishnan from Kerala on vocals, Mysore Nagaraj on violin, KV Prakash on mridangam and Giridhar Udupa on ghatam.

Starting the show with his own composition Omkara Pranava in Shanmukhapriya raga, he went on to present Nadathanum Anisham, a composition by Thyagaraja in Chitaranjani raga. 

Then he performed Gaana Sudha Rasa which was in Naattai raga. He also sang a few more compositions like  Neesati Neeve Ranga. The jugalbandi between him and Krishnan at many moments was mesmerising and even comical. The part where each of the instrumentalists played solo was enchanting, especially the performance by Giridhar Udupa who was on the ghatam. “I’m a big fan of Dr Balamuralikrishna. I loved everything about the show,” said Jahnavi Bhat, a member of the audience.

The last day started with a brilliant show by a group of young artistes from across Karnataka, who presented Thyagaraja’s ‘Divine Melody of Five Gems’, which was basically the Pancharatna kritis with a unique twist. As the audience expected a normal rendition, it was presently surprised to see the performance in the form of a

Conducted by MG Venkatraghavan, the vocal rendition was supported fantastically by classical instruments like violin, veena, flute, sitar, mridangam and western ones like keyboard.  This segment was telecasted live on the Doordarshan channel across various states as well.

This was followed a Hindustani classical concert by Purandhara Devaranamas, the vocal recital of Purandaradasa compositions by Smitha Bellur in Hindustani style. In the evening, the ‘Fourth Saamagaana Mathanga National Award’ was given to vocalist and musicologist Nedunuri Krishnamurthy, who spoke about the importance of manodharma.

“The term Manodharma means an inner creativity. An artiste needs to have manodharma to hold the audience’s attention each time,” explained Ravishankar from the Bharatiya Saamagaana Sabha.

The last event of the grand show was a Carnatic vocal concert was presented by Abhishek Raghuram, which also saw a packed hall.

Sudha Prakash, a former chartered accountant who attended the festival on most days, was thoroughly impressed with the execution of the show.

“I just loved the Pancharatna rendition by the youngsters. I never expected the show to be in the form of a symphony. Since the show was telecast on TV, I got calls from my friends in different places who were as surprised,” she said. “An interlude was presented by the instrumentalists before each song and a cue was taken by the vocalists. I thoroughly enjoyed the entire festival,” she added. 

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