Concert of TNS at Asthikasamajam ,Thiruvanmiyur on 16-7-2009
Welcome showers after a long spell of summer.
TNS rasikas in Chennai had a treat after a long interval of about three months or so, though the rasikas in other places were able to listen to him in the meanwhile. The concert was at Asthika samajam Thiruvanmiyur and TNS was accompanied by M.Chandrasekharan on violin, Guruvayur Dorai on mridangam and SundarKumar on kanjira. It was a delightful team and made the rasikas joyous.
The concert started with the varnam in Kalyani adi tala. The next was the krthi of Thyagaraja in asaverri, raaramaainti.Then TNS started the raga panthuvarali, which is one of his fortresses, which in fact he has many. The krthi was SambO mahaadheva of Thyagaraja. The effect was something wonderful. It reminded of the words “nandi,mattalam kotta” with the powerful play of Dorai and Sundarkumar, when we could hear the damaruka of Nataraja sounding, naradaryaaz by MC and topped with the effect of (sesha)gopaala(Krishnan) paada, we could visualize sadaiyaada arvaupadamaada, the natanam at Thillai. The raga , svara at paramadhayakara and the pakkaa vaadhya were all exemplary.
Next was the Dikshithar krthi abhayaambaam in sahana. This was followed by a splendid abhogi alaapana and the krthi was manasunilpa of Thyagaraja. The svara was a bonfire with the accompanists joining in.
After veeksheham of Naraynatheertha in Ahiri which was followed by kanakaangadha in kanakangi by Koteesvara ayyar, TNS launched the raga keeravani which was in three phased with fitting answer from MC. TNS did grahbhedham into ahiri and bouli. The words of the pallavi were devineeye thunai then madhuraivaaz meena lochani and it was full of expertise. The keeravani raga was like a young girl sporting in a beautiful garden, now enjoying the cool of the zephyr, now gathering flowers, now running after the butterfly and again playing in the lotus pond. The thaanam was the dance of the peacock and the svara ragamailka was the cataract.. The keeravani made Sri Narasimhan , the organizer go into raptures and say that he heard the keeravani 50 years ago from TNR and it was still ringing in his ears and he recognized the same today from TNS, which must have been traveling in the air finding a fitting resort all these years! He further said that this will keep ringing for fifty more years. He expressed a wish that TNS should live a hundred years more (innum oru noottRaandu irum) and all the rasikas reflected the thought with applause.
After a fantastic thani by Sri Dorai and Sundarkumar TNS sang the Petriazvar pasuram puLLin vai pilandhittai which was followed by Baro krishnayya of Purandaradasa.The concert ended with the thiruppugaz peravai in raga malika.
The overall it had on me was that of the Ganges starting from the Gangadhara (panthuvarali) becoming Gangodhri and yamunodhri (sahana) and gurgling over the rocks (abhogi) slowly (ahiri) became alaknanda (keervani), most beautiful of all. The keeravani also reminded of the thooyaperuneer yamunai especially when the yasmunsithuraivan was also brought in front( pasuram and baro Krishnayya)
I wish to add a few words about my writing on TNS.I have said this before and saying it now. I am a rasika of TNS and not a critic of music. I share my experience on hearing TNS with sahrdhayas, that is the rasikas of TNS who enjoy my writings on him. His music goes inside and does not stop with ears and arouses imagination, poetry and divine emotions. This is what a good music should do which is why it is called nadhopasana The divinity is ready to come if you only keep your heart open. This is akin to what Wordsworth felt to be in one with nature, what the trees and birds and animals in Brindavan experienced on hearing the flute of Krishna, what the sages saw in the silence of Himalayas. I only thank the Lord in making me experience the divine presence through the music of TNS. Different people may have this experience with different mediums but to me it is the music of TNS that is all.