Brilliant display of virtuosity
Kozhikode: The annual Navarathri music festival organized by Sadgurukulam at Vettakkorumakan Temple in Tali here was inaugurated by Professor Kumara Kerala Varma, veteran vocalist and retired principal of Swathi Thirunal College of Music, on Thursday.
A highlight of the function apart from the grand concert by Kottakal Ranjith Varier was that mridangam maestro Parassala Ravi was honoured with the ‘Sadhguru Shreshta’ award instituted by Sadhgurukulam.
The concert by Kottakkal Ranjith Varier on the inaugural day of the music festival was a melodic treat for the entire span of two-and-a-half hours.
Commencing the concert with Muthiah Bhagavathar’s Taana varnam Sree Rajamathangi Chamundeshwari in raga Shudha Dhanyasi, Ranjith moved on to Ponniah Pillai’s Mayaa Atheetha Swaroopini in Raga Mayamalavagowla. Thyagaraja’s Nannugannatalli in raga Sindhukannada was rendered briskely before taking up Maharaja Swathi Thirunal’s ShrI Kumara Nagaralaye in raga Atana.
Dikshithar’s Visalakshi Visveshi in Raga Panthuvarali was sung next. Ranjith’s alapana of the raga was brilliant. Nellai Viswanathan, who was in his elements throughout the concert, brought out the meditative effect of the raga to full measure. The neraval and kalpana swaras were scholarly. Viswanathan’s retorts during the swara prasthara were classy.
Kavi Mathruboddaya’s Nee Mathi Salaka in raga Anandabhairavi was taken up as the sub- main piece of the concert. While Ranjith’s alapana of the raga was bewitching, Viswanathan’s delineation was nothing but chiselled aesthetics all the way through.
The neraval and kalpana swaras were sung with poise.
Ranjith sang Muthuswamy Deekshitar’s Kanakambari Karunyamrutha lahari in raga Kanakambari before embarking on Dikshithar's 'Devi Jagat Janani' in raga Sankarabharanam, the main piece of the evening.
This was also the piece de resistance of the concert.
While listeners were soaked in a meditative mood after listening to Ananda Bhairavi and kanakambari, Sankarabharanam that followed next catapulted them to exalted spheres of music.
The grandeur of Sankarabharam was fully brought out by Ranjith in his alapana.He highlighted the raga sancharas with finesse.
Viswanathan’s tremendous knowledge and experience was evident in his delineation of the raga. His exquisite sancharas in the raga took rasikas to an ethereal realm. The ambience was charged with devotion by the end of the delineation of the raga. The neraval at Deva Makutamani was aesthetically rich. Ranjith’s swara prastharas were exquisite, so was Viswanathan’s retorts on the violin.
In the post-main section, Papanasam Sivan’s Karunai Daivame in Raga Sindhu Bhairavi and Dikshithar’s Shree Kamalambika in Sri Raga were sung with devotional fervour.
Parassala Ravi and Arun Chandrahasan provided double mridangam accompaniment. Parassala Ravi’s tremendous expertise was evident throughout the concert. The Thaniyavarthanam by the duo provided an aural treat to listeners.