A 75-minute vocal concert by TV Gopalakrishnan (TVG) in Thrissur was an exposition of his musical erudition and deep insight into Tyagaraja compositions. The octogenarian virtuosos concert, being held here after a long break, attracted a number of listeners.
Rare ragas and compositions generally do not find favour with the audience. But TVGs selections seemed an attempt to highlight the varied facets of the saint composer, especially since his was the opening concert of a three-day Tyagaraja aaradhana. In this respect, it was a didactic session for the listeners too.
Ode to Ganesha
Bangala raga, with which he began the concert, manifested in the not-so-frequently heard composition Giriraja sudha tanaya sadaya. The selection was appropriate as it was a short invocation to Ganesha. A janya of Sankarabharanam, it created an ambience of supplication. Gowlipanthu followed and the composition was Thera theeyaga raadha. The mood of the kriti, in which Tyagaraja entreated Lord Venkateswara to remove screens of anger, arrogance and jealousy that prevented him from attaining moksha was well-conveyed by the rendition.
Perhaps, the rarest among the ragas he rendered during the recital was Pratapavarali, janya of Harikamboji. Vina nashakoni unnamura is the only composition in this raga. It was a treat to listen to the rendition as it was embellished with swaras aplenty.
The musicians esoteric style of alapana came forth in the essaying of Kalyanavasantham. His movement through the sthayis was smooth. True to the expectations of the audience, he chose Nadaloludai brahmanandamandave manasa in Roopakam. Gambhiravani was elaborated with all the concomitant melodic niceties and the composition was Sadamadin dalatu gadara, which described the virtues of Siva. Another rare raga, it is the janya of Naganandini, the 30th melakartha raga.
TVG chose the simple, pentatonic raga Mohanam as the main one for the concert. Innumerable were the shades of the raga that were painted on a wide canvas. Perhaps his voice blossomed in full in this exercise and at times he appeared lost in the raga while traversing the three octaves with abandon. Mohana Rama mukhajitha soma embraced umpteen sangatis. Attukal Subramaniam was on the violin and during the tani, TVG encouraged him to give his best. The percussion tani by KMS Mani on the mridangam and Tripunithura Radhakrishnan on the ghatam was short but captivating.
Devoted to Rama
The post-main numbers were all on Rama but the sahithya was notable as it showcased the composers intense devotion to Rama. Paripalaya, paripalaya, paripalaya Raghunatha in Reethigowla has many charanams, but all single line. The musician chose only a couple of them. The concluding one Rama, Rama, Rama mam pahi was in Yamunakalyani, Adi.
The programme was organised by Kerala Brahmana Sabha.