Category Archives: Kutcheri

Sanjay Subrahmanyan’s Kutcheri at Vani Mahal

Nagai Sriram – Violin
Tanjavur Murugabhoopathy – Mridangam
Perukkavu P L Sudheer – Ghatam

1. Chala (varnam) – Kedaram – Ata
2. Nee Bhakti Bhagyasudha – Sriranjani – Swarams at Nee Bhakti
3. KonDal vaNNanai – Yadukula Kambhoji – Alapana
4. Chintayamaam – Bhairavi – neraval at anga soundarya vijitha vadanam, swarams at Utthunga Kamaneeya Vrusha Turangam
5. Gangeyavasanadhara – Hamir Kalyani – Alapana – swarams at Gangeya – Tani Avartanam
6. Chittam Irangadhadhennaiyya – Sahana
7. Saramati RTP – Kandanai vandanai sei maname thandhaiyaai thaayaai vandharuLum – kaNDa jati tripuTa – Swarams in Neelambari, Reetigowlai, Chalanattai, Sindhubhairavi

The concert started with the not-so-often heard varnam in Kedaram. While the song nee Bhakti Bhagyasudha itself was very beautiful, the kalpana swarams in Sriranjani which started off with a very leisurely pace short swarams and slowly moved on with increasing tempo and ran through multiple cycles complemented the song very well.

A very beautiful, unhurried Yadukula Kambhoji alapana was followed by konDal vaNNanai.

A wholesome rendition of the Panchabhuta kriti, Chintayamaam in Bhairavi with a neraval at anga soundarya brought out the bhava and the beauty that Dikshitar’s kritis have. The icing on the cake was the fast swarams at Utthunga Kamaneeya Vrusha Turangam. What a brilliant rendition this entire piece turned out to be!

With a contrasting feel and all beauty personified was the raaga that followed Bhairavi – Hamir Kalyani. Sanjay was in no hurry and sang a leisurely alapana exploring the raaga in all its beauty. The soothing feel of Hamir Kalyani was fully brought out. The violin too matched the Alapana. Gangeyavasanadhara is a classic song by Sanjay and the kalpana swarams further added on to the beauty of the composition. The swarams ended with several rounds of classic Sanjay-style brigha-filled swarams.

This season Sanjay has been having different percussionists for each concert and each one has been having nice Tani Avartanams in different styles.

The evergreen composition in Sahana, Chittam Irangadhadhennaiyya, was an absolute joy to listen to as always.

Then came the much-awaited part of the Kutcheri – RTP. The mesmerizing Saramati was the chosen raagam. As Sanjay explored the raagam in-depth traversing its notes with an ease and effortlessness that comes with expertise, experience and knowledge, I lost myself in the moving crescendos that this raagam is filled with.

Ask anyone for their list of favourite, happy raagams and you are sure to find Neelambari, Reetigowlai in their list. Completely contrasting to Saramati when it comes to the blissful bhava these raagams evoke, the RTP moved on to blissful mode in swarams in those. Some brilliant swarams changed the blissful mode to a meditative mode in Chalanattai and SindhubSanjay Subrahmanyan at Vani Mahal on 22-12-2017

Nagai Sriram – Violin
Tanjavur Murugabhoopathy – Mridangam
Perukkavu P L Sudheer – Ghatam

1. Chala (varnam) – Kedaram – Ata
2. Nee Bhakti Bhagyasudha – Sriranjani – Swarams at Nee Bhakti
3. KonDal vaNNanai – Yadukula Kambhoji – Alapana
4. Chintayamaam – Bhairavi – neraval at anga soundarya vijitha vadanam, swarams at Utthunga Kamaneeya Vrusha Turangam
5. Gangeyavasanadhara – Hamir Kalyani – Alapana – swarams at Gangeya – Tani Avartanam
6. Chittam Irangadhadhennaiyya – Sahana
7. Saramati RTP – Kandanai vandanai sei maname thandhaiyaai thaayaai vandharuLum – kaNDa jati tripuTa – Swarams in Neelambari, Reetigowlai, Chalanattai, Sindhubhairavi

The concert started with the not-so-often heard varnam in Kedaram. While the song nee Bhakti Bhagyasudha itself was very beautiful, the kalpana swarams in Sriranjani which started off with a very leisurely pace short swarams and slowly moved on with increasing tempo and ran through multiple cycles complemented the song very well.

A very beautiful, unhurried Yadukula Kambhoji alapana was followed by konDal vaNNanai.

A wholesome rendition of the Panchabhuta kriti, Chintayamaam in Bhairavi with a neraval at anga soundarya brought out the bhava and the beauty that Dikshitar’s kritis have. The icing on the cake was the fast swarams at Utthunga Kamaneeya Vrusha Turangam. What a brilliant rendition this entire piece turned out to be!

With a contrasting feel and all beauty personified was the raaga that followed Bhairavi – Hamir Kalyani. Sanjay was in no hurry and sang a leisurely alapana exploring the raaga in all its beauty. The soothing feel of Hamir Kalyani was fully brought out. The violin too matched the Alapana. Gangeyavasanadhara is a classic song by Sanjay and the kalpana swarams further added on to the beauty of the composition. The swarams ended with several rounds of classic Sanjay-style brigha-filled swarams.

This season Sanjay has been having different percussionists for each concert and each one has been having nice Tani Avartanams in different styles.

The evergreen composition in Sahana, Chittam Irangadhadhennaiyya, was an absolute joy to listen to as always.

Then came the much-awaited part of the Kutcheri – RTP. The mesmerizing Saramati was the chosen raagam. As Sanjay explored the raagam in-depth traversing its notes with an ease and effortlessness that comes with expertise, experience and knowledge, I lost myself in the moving crescendos that this raagam is filled with.

Ask anyone for their list of favourite, happy raagams and you are sure to find Neelambari, Reetigowlai in their list. Completely contrasting to Saramati when it comes to the blissful bhava these raagams evoke, the RTP moved on to blissful mode in swarams in those. Some brilliant swarams in Chalanattai and Sindhubhairavi changed the blissful mode to meditative and brought the RTP to a close.

I left the concert during Sindhubhairavi swarams with the Saramati still echoing in my mind.

As always, sitting back and listening to Sanjay effortlessly create masterpieces out of everything he sings turned out to be such an enriching and fulfilling experience!

Going Gaga over Sanjay’s Brahma Gana Sabha Kutcheri!

If you were to ask me for one venue where you shouldn’t miss Sanjay Subrahmanyan’s concert during the December Season, my instant reply would be ‘Brahma Gana Sabha kutcheri happening at Sivagami Pethachi Auditorium’. Sanjay’s Brahma Gana Sabha kutcheris have always been one of his best kutcheris of the Season with it being filled with several elaborate raaga expositions aided by the lengthy duration of the concert. It has always been for at least 3 hours 15 minutes duration. Yesterday’s went on for 3 hours 30 minutes! And what a memorable musical experience did it turn out to be!

About a decade or so back, I remember how Sanjay’s voice used to have slight problems during the first couple of songs of the concert and then went on to improve as the concert proceeded, finally delivering such a great performance that you would soon have forgotten about those voice issues. Cut back to 2009 or so when Sanjay’s voice didn’t have those voice problems anymore. The results of his hard work and training has since then only reflected in his performances becoming better and better with each day.
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Sanjay Subrahmanyan’s Concert

I went to Sanjay Subrahmanyan’s concert at Sivagami Pethachi Auditorium yestereday. I had called the previous concert as one of Sanjay’s best. Now I am at a loss for words to describe yesterday’s concert! Should I call it one of his ‘bestest’?!! It was sheer pleasure to attend such a wonderful 3-hour concert after a long time!
Here’s the complete list of songs sung by Sanjay:

1. Nadathanumanisam – Chintamani
2. Raghunayaka – Hamsadhwani
3. Geeti Chakra – Kannada
4. Arulvaai Angayarkanniye – Darmavati
5. Aadum Deivam – Kambhoji (Main piece)
6. RTP – Hamsanandi
Pallavi: Karuninchara – Ragamalika (Sahana, Saveri, Suddha Danyasi, Nalinakanti, Bhahudari)
7. Pagaivanukku Arulvai – Ragamalika
8. Kulam Tarum(Viruttam) – Ragamalika (Shanmugapriya, Behag, Sindhubhairavi, Sama)
Narayana Nalinaayaka – Sama
9. Ganta Mani – Kanada
10. English Notes – Sankarabharanam
11. Mangalam – Sowrashtram

Accompaniments:
Varadarajan – Violin
P. Satish Kumar – Mridangam
Bangalore Rajasekar – Morsing

The Kannada raaga alapana that he sang before singing the Dikshitar krithi ‘Geeti Chakra’ was superb. Incidentally, that happens to be one of my favourite songs sung by Sanjay! The joy of hearing your favourite singer sing your favourite song in a kutcheri is something that cannot be described in words!
The Kambhoji alapana was so beautiful that it left you wishing that he would sing it for some more time (It was less than 10 minutes in duration). The Pallavi ‘Karuninchara’ which he sang in different raagas and that too in the tune of popular krithis like Énta Nerchina, Manavyala and Brova Baarama, made it even more enjoyable.
Varadarajan, on the violin, was excellent as usual. (Since Varadarajan plays for both Sanjay and TMK regularly, I think I would have attended more number of Varadarajan’s concerts than Sanjay’s and TMK’s). Bangalore Rajasekar on the morsing and Satish Kumar on the mridangam, made the Tani Avartanam a thoroughly enjoyable one.

T. M. Krishna’s Concert

I went to TMK’s concert on Sunday at Vani Mahal. Here’s the complete list of songs he sang:

1. Varnam – Navaragamalika
2. Gnanamo Sagaraada – Poorvikalyani
3. Sri Kumaara Nagaraalaye – Atana
4. Seethapathe – Kamas
5. Ehi Annapoorne – Punnagavarali
6. Kripajoochutaku – Chaya Tarangini
7. Kathikeya Gangeya – Todi (Main piece of the concert)
8. Smarasundaraajuni – Paras
9. Sarvam Brahmamayam – Madhuvanti
10. Vasudevasutam Devam – Ragamalika (Sahana, Bhairavi, Kambhoji, Kalyani, Mukhari)
Balakrishnam – Mukhari
11. Anri Ulagam Alandaai – Sindhu Bhairavi
12. Mangalam – Sowrashtram

Accompaniments:
R. K. Shriramkumar – Violin
V. Kamalakar Rao – Mridangam
Anirudh Athreya – Khanjira

It was yet another wonderful concert by TMK. A special mention has to be made about Anirudh Athreya who was very good on the Khanjira.

T.M.Krishna’s Concert

I went to T.M.Krishna’s first concert of the season at Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan yesterday. Here is the list of songs that he sang:

1. Varnam – Kedaragowlai
2. Seshachalanayakam – Varali
3. Dorakuna – Bilahari
4. Vinaraadana – Devagandhari
5. Nadachi Nadachi – Karaharapriya
6. Sevikka Vendum Ayya – Andolika
7. Pacchai Maamalaipol (viruttam)
Janaki Ramana – Kapi
8. Talalenura – Kamas
9. Manasa Sancharare – Sama
10. Mangalam – Sowrashtram

Accompaniments:
Guru Karaikudi R.Mani – Mridangam
Ramanujacharyulu – Violin
V.Suresh – Ghatam

The more I listen to him sing, the more I seem to like his singing! He sang the Bilahari alapana followed by the kriti Dorakuna and then the swarams for the same so excellently that I thought this would be the best piece of the concert. But, the Nadachi kriti in Karaharapriya that soon followed proved me wrong. ‘Sevikka vendum ayya’, which he sang after someone in the audience asked him to was also superb.
The audience gave the longest applause for the tani avartanam that I have ever seen! In the end, TMK requested the audience to be seated while he sang Mangalam. They left only after he finished singing it. It reminded me of TMK’s request to the audience in a concert at Music Academy during the last season when he asked the audience not to leave in the midst of a song or during the tani avartnam. They gave respect to his words and as soon as every song got over, one could see a large group of people getting up and leaving!

December Music Season

It’s that time of the year again when there are so many concerts happening in every nook and corner of the city that you will end up being confused as to which one you should attend that day! No wonder Madras is the place-to-be for a Carnatic music rasika in the month of December!

I went to the concert of Sanjay Subrahmanyan yesterday at Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan. It was one of Sanjay’s best concerts! He started the concert with my favourite ‘I Vasudha’ in Sahana. I just loved the Harikambhoji and Hamirkalyani alapana. Sanjay was accompanied by S.Varadarajan on the violin, Srimushnam Raja Rao on the mridangam and Coimbatore Mohanram on the ghatam. Each one of them gave a thoroughly enjoyable performance. Thank God I didn’t miss the concert yesterday!