Sanjay Subrahmanyan -The Bhavan, London - 23 September 2018

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#1 Sanjay Subrahmanyan -The Bhavan, London - 23 September 2018

Post by classical91 » 30 Sep 2018, 17:37

Vocal: Sanjay Subrahmanyan
Violin: S Varadarajan
Mridhangam: Neyveli Venkatesh

1.E Nada - varnam - Adi - chalanata - Balamuralikrishna(?)

2. Shankari Shankaru - rupakam - SS - N, S

3. Raga sudhA - Andholika - Thyagarajar - A, S

3. Entha cheluvage - Yagapriya - Purandaradasa - Adhi

4. Innanum Sandheha - Keeravani - Misra Chapu - GKB - A, N, S

5. Shree ramam - Narayanagowla - T

6. Marugelara - Jayanthashree - T

7. Hamsanandhi - RTP
Pudhiyadhor ulagam seivom
Poridum ulagatthai saippom
Swaras - sahana, dhravidakalavathi, bhairavi

8.(Thamizh) Noolai padi - behag - rupakam - Bharathidaasan

9. Nama sudha rasam - kaapi - Adhi - Swathi Thirunal

Sanjay's annual appearance at the Bhavan in London was a welcome break to an otherwise small carnatic music scene. Sanjay has been the definition of an evolving musician, from the unique facial expressions that used to accompany his singing, to the RTPs in hindustani and apoorva ragas, to his focus on quality tamil composisitions today. Sanjay's concerts have also gained a predictability; a sense of knowing what to expect, and this concert was a fine example.

Opening with a rare chalanata varnan set to Adhi taalam, Sanjay got over an initial vocal congestion towards the end of the charanam. The charanam was itself the highlight of the composition with atheetha eduppu (2 before) did wonder whether an athitha eduppu was needed for the particular line, as the composition would have easily fit into a sama eduppu, but surely the composer(s) must have though of this and put the athitha eduppu for a reason!

A quick Shankari Shankaru was next - a no-frills rendition with neraval and swaras at Shyama Krishna. Interesting use of the 'mdpd' prayogam as an amaippu here. Andholika came next, with a standard Sanjay alapana. Mridhangam accompaniment for this particular composition was lacklustre. One was left yearning for more pauses in the accompaniment to the kriti, and the vidwan seemed to prefer Nada playing over intuitive accompaniment even for swaras. However, Sanjay took good advantage of this during the second kala swaras, with a sarvalaghu swaraprastharam reminiscent of Madurai Mani Iyer.

A Yagapriya composition of Purandara Dasa (Entha cheluvage) was followed by a most meditative Keeravani. Sanjay's voice was in form, but the violinist's alapana stole the show. Soulful, well paced and perfectly in tune, Varadarajan proved time and time again to be an intelligent and highly capable musician to match, and exceed, the best minds. An impulsive quick 'Petra ThAi thanai' was followed by Innanum Sandeha Padalamo. Patantharam was strong, and neraval and swaras were rendered in second kaalam only, with a good, restrained kanakku show.

Two filler pieces later (Shree Ramam and Marugelara), came the main, an RTP in Hamsanandhi. As previously mentioned, while I find Sanjay's concert format now predictable, this is by no means a negative thing. In fact, his choice of compositions have remained heavily unpredictable and delightfully varied. Hamsanandhi was no different. A soulful alapana spanning beyond three octaves, and hamsadhwani and abhogi were surprise additions to the alapana. This seemed like an unnecessary addition however, seeing that they never reappeared in the pallavi or ragamalika swaras that followed. The pallavi was the Bharatiyar verse 'PudhiyadhOr ulagam seivOm (a) POridum ulagatthai sAippOm', set to Adhi thalam. No circus acts with trikaalam, and the pallavi was given an elaborate treatment. A mixed-bag thani followed. I found the playing quite noisy with little substance in places, while there were other moments of good to great playing. Neyveli Venkatesh has great control over his fingers, and the clarity-speed balance is high. Yet, one feels that he ventures too much into rocky waters resulting in a not-so-comfortable journey. Indeed, the landing with the final kanakku was missed, and therfore repeated again before an adjustment was made towards the end for the correct landing. A further reason for the disappointment t was that the pallavi was 4 thalli, a unique eduppu. I was therefore certainly expecting the mridhangam vidwan to play his koraippus and kanakkus not samam to samam plus 4, but rather plus 4 to plus 4 (or little finger to little finger). I almost felt cheated by the samam beginning of kanakkus, and was left yearning for someone to redo the Thani at sundu viral eduppu!

Another Tamil composition, (Tamil) Noolai padi in behag was followed by NAma sudhA rasam in kApi, at which point I had to unfortunately make my way back on my 1.5 hour journey back home. An effort well worth all the trouble, Sanjay and team delivered an overall commendable performance.
Last edited by classical91 on 01 Oct 2018, 08:42, edited 1 time in total.
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#2 Re: Sanjay Subrahmanyan -The Bhavan, London - 23 September 2018

Post by rajeshnat » 30 Sep 2018, 21:46

How long was the concert? Thank you for your review
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#3 Re: Sanjay Subrahmanyan -The Bhavan, London - 23 September 2018

Post by HarishankarK » 30 Sep 2018, 23:02

#2-Syama Sastri
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#4 Re: Sanjay Subrahmanyan -The Bhavan, London - 23 September 2018

Post by classical91 » 01 Oct 2018, 08:44

rajeshnat wrote:
30 Sep 2018, 21:46
How long was the concert? Thank you for your review
Concert was a good 3 hours, starting 10 minutes late.
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