Saketharaman

Carnatic Musicians
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rajeshnat
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#1 Saketharaman

Post by rajeshnat » 30 Nov 2014, 08:35

Disciple from Lalgudi Jayaraman school and also the younger brother of Visaka hari. He is indeed making a great mark in CM. I just saw in today's paper Nov 30th,2014 that he is conferred the prestigious Isai Peroli award from Karthik Fine Arts. Congratulations to Saketharaman.
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kvchellappa
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#2 Re: Saketharaman

Post by kvchellappa » 06 May 2017, 19:24

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rajeshnat
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#3 Re: Saketharaman

Post by rajeshnat » 08 Jul 2018, 17:37

Saketharaman sharing his thoughts on his Pallavi creation wrote:
30 Nov 2014, 08:35
Acid test for a carnatic musician is to render a "Ragam Tanam Pallavi" for over an hour and engage the audience. One requires considerable skill or "Vidwat" to render a RTP. One needs command over Ragam and Thalam, grip in rendering Thanam and creativity in good measure.

As musicians, we have equal responsibility towards ensuring that the art form that we pursue reaches the laymen as well as connoisseurs. Academically these ideas or experiments might be mind boggling, but we need to ensure the rendition turns out to be aesthetic.

My Guru Shri Lalgudi Jayaraman sir mentioned to me about an incident, that is etched in my memory. After he had reproduced the Simhanandana Pallavi that Shri Mudikondan Venkatrama Iyer performed in Music Academy, a rasika came to him and remarked that he did not understand anything about the Thala but the Raga Bhava moved him. That, according to my guru is the true testimony to the Vidwath of the performer. A RTP should be easy on the ears, even if the most complex aspect is being performed.

There are several stalwarts who have defined and re-defined how to structure and render a Pallavi. Amongst the foremost are Shri Mudikondan Venkatrama Iyer, Shri Alathur Brothers, Shri Lalgudi Jayaraman, Smt D.K.Pattammal, Shri Balamuralikrishna, Shri T.R.Subramaniam, Shri T.N.Seshagopalan. The most important aspect in a Pallavi is the scope to elaborate Niraval. Shri G.N.Balasubramaniam has focussed more on the "Raaga" rendering portion, which is truly breathtaking. Shri Madurai Mani Iyer has focussed more on "Ragamalika Swara" that make the audience sway to his tunes.

Amongst "Gen X", Shri Sanjay Subramaniam created a phenomenon by taking up unusual themes such as rendering about nature and made it a point to include a RTP in 90% of his concerts. Shri TM Krishna added a new dimension to Thanam singing with his slow paced mesmerizing singing in the base registers. Smt Sowmya performed Pallavis in a lot of unusual Thalas admirably. Vidushis Smt. Ranjani Gayatri added a stunning concept of parallel presentation with Graha Bedham.

Amongst the millenials, numerous musicians such as my friends Vidwan Abhishek Raghuram, Vidwan Balamurali Krishna, Vidushis Akkarai Sisters, Vidushi Gayatri Kamakoti, Vidwan Bharat Sundar, Vidwan Ramakrishnan Murthy , Vidushi Sriranjani Santhanagopalan continue to push the boundaries.

We have tremendous respect for each other, as we know what it takes to perform an "Avadhana" Pallavi or a "Santha Thala" or a "Marga Thala" or a "Sankeerna Nadai" Pallavi or composing an own Thaalam. Many rasikas feel that with these outstanding musicians, they get a reassurance that carnatic music is very much in safe hands, as it has always been.

"Pallavi Darbar" organized by Shri Shashikiran Kn is a great platform to showcase one's Vidwat. It is a unique festival wherein the artistes render a full fledged RTP for close to 2 hours. From the day Shri Shashikiran invites us to perform, we start thinking about what to sing, what to explore. How can we be creative and push the boundaries a bit more?

I always look forward to performing in "Pallavi Darbar", as it requires me to be at my best in terms of intellect and aesthetics. Just like my peers and friends, I was breaking my head, as to what to perform in Pallavi Darbar 2018. In the past, I have rendered a "Ranjani Mala" in Sankeerna Triputa, a pallavi in Nalinakanthi-Bindumalini differentiating Nadai and Gathi, a Ashta-Gowlai ragamalika in "Pancha Gathi". With my guru's blessings, an idea struck me that I could try out a Saptaswara RTP. My wife Dr Vidya and myself came up with the names of the ragas starting or ending with Shadjam, Rishabam, Gandharam, Madhyamam and Panchamam. "Purnashadjam, BinnaShadjam, Rishabhapriya, Devagandhari, Karnataka Devagandhari, Nagagandhari,Simhendramadhyamam, Madhyamavathi and Lalithapanchamam" were the ragas that we zeroed in. Then we were stuck. I could not come up with names of ragas for "Dheivatham" and "Nishadam". Then I researched, if there were any ragas with that suffix/prefix. I was dumb-struck to find that Vidwan Shri Chitravina Ravikiran had rendered a Saptaswara Pallavi in 2006 in Krishna Gana Sabha. He had composed a raga called "Dhaivathangi" and according to Muthuswamy Dikshitar Paddhathi, the raga Neethimathi is called "Nishadam". I was just blown by his brilliance. Although I could find the material online, there was no audio or video samples available. I checked with Shri Ravikiran, who was in USA. He kindly helped me confirm that my interpretation of "Dhaivathangi" was correct with the Arohanam of Mohanam and Avarohanam of Vasanthi. I also thought I should atleast add one more dimension to this Pallavi to make it more challenging and added "Sapta Thalas" to make it a "Sapta Raga Sapta Thala Sapta Swara" Pallavi.

The fun continued. I came up with a base number of 18, which is easy on the ears and is not longish. 18 as we know is divisible by 2,3,6 and 9. Tisram, Chatusram and Sankeernam fit in nicely. Subsequently, I discussed with veteran Vidwans Shri Nagai Muralidharan and Shri Mannargudi Easwaran about the rules for structuring of Pallavi for the Saptha Thalas.

Then I came up with the Sapta Thalas that will fit in with the number 18. Sankeerna Eka [2 Kalai], Misra Rupakam [ 2 Kalai], Tisra Jhampa [ 3 Kalai], Kanda Triputa [ 2 Kalai], Misra Ata [ 1 Kalai], Kanda Matya [ Tisra Gathi] and Tisra Dhruva [ Laghu Chatusram and Dhrutham Sankeerna]

Then comes the Sahityam part, which is as important as the Raga and the Thala. As we think of Saptaswara, we are reminded immediately of Thyagaraja Swami's composition "Shobillu Saptaswara". I just took the lyrics from the Pallavi of that composition - "Saptaswara Sundarula Bhajimpavae Manasa" and appended Shadjaadhi, Rishabaadhi, Gaaandharaadhi, so on and so forth. The meaning is very simple - "Oh Mind, praise the seven divine notes" !

However, I took the artistic liberty of relaxing 3 rules: -

1. Generally a Pallavi should not be rendered in "Eka" thalam as there is no Dhrutham. Since the theme was Sapta Thala, I included Eka as well.
2. For Ata thalam, it is necessary that two Padagarbhams or Arudhis fall in place. In this Pallavi, there is only one Arudhi. I could have confined to rule #2, with a little more thought.
3. Thirdly, for Dhruva Thalam, the Arudhi should fall after the Dhrutham, the starting point of the second Laghu. For ease of rendition, I fixed the Arudhi at the start of the Dhrutham in Tisra Dhruva.

The Ragas, Thalas and the Sahityam came together nicely. Subsequently, I was worried about how this is going to sound along with my co-artistes, as the Pallavi had to be rendered in 7 Thalas. Trikalam and Tisram had to be done at one stretch, covering the 7 Thalas. It would have required lot of coordination with my co-artistes. My worries were dispelled immediately when I told about this idea to my co-artistes. Each of them gave me an idea to embellish it further. Vidwan Shri H.N.Bhaskar gave me an idea that I should not only render Alapana in Simhendramadhyamam, but also render Alapana in atleast 4 ragas and similarly Thanam in 4 ragas, keeping Simhendramadhyamam as the fulcrum. Vidwan Shri Patri satish kumar came up with a concept of Sapta Nadais. He played the numbers 3,4,5,6,7,8 and 9 in succession throughout the Thani Avarthanam. He played Tisram, Chatusram, Khandam, Tisra [Mel Kalam], Misram, Chatusra [Mel Kalam] and Sankeernam. Khanjira vidwan Shri KV Gopalakrishnan spontaneously reproduced those variations admirably.

With God's blessings, things came together. A plethora of Vidwans, Vidushis and connoisseurs were seated amongst the audience. Vidwan Shri T.N.Seshagopalan was awarded the "Pallavi Chakravarthy" just before my concert and he stayed back for my concert. In the middle of the Thanam rendering, Shri TNS had remarked that I should render Dhaivathangi in more detail as he was keen that I should establish the Chatusruthi Dheivatham more pronouncedly, for the benefit of the audience. As he suggested, I further explored the raga in more detail. He later texted me that my approach was praiseworthy and he enjoyed the programme very much, which were comments that I would cherish in my lifetime. Shri TNS Sir was one of the earliest pioneers of employing the Dhvi-Dhaivatham in the Bhajan "Tuma Bina More" in "Shuddha Hindolam".

Personally, it was one of the most satisfying concerts for me. As Vidwans, we love the recognition that we get from other Vidwans and Vidushis, as much as we love the recognition from the general audience.

Looking back, I wonder what is my contribution in this Pallavi, as I had just stitched together ideas from different musicians.

Already looking forward to further editions of Pallavi Darbar !

Sharing the youtube link of my Pallavi Darbar 2018 concert
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rajeshnat
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#4 Re: Saketharaman

Post by rajeshnat » 08 Jul 2018, 17:39

As mentioned in the above post
RTP in sapta ragas ,sapta thalas and sapta swaras sung by SakethaRaman in Pallavi Darbar 2018
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NPvZoZ1NHLM&t=1s

Keep it up Saketharaman with your great idea and show.
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kvchellappa
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#5 Re: Saketharaman

Post by kvchellappa » 08 Jul 2018, 19:23

That is a saga in a positive sense. Thanks.
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rajeshnat
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#6 Re: Saketharaman

Post by rajeshnat » 11 Jul 2018, 22:50

Saketharaman sharing his thoughts on his Pallavi creation wrote:
30 Nov 2014, 08:35
Each of them gave me an idea to embellish it further. Vidwan Shri H.N.Bhaskar gave me an idea that I should not only render Alapana in Simhendramadhyamam, but also render Alapana in atleast 4 ragas and similarly Thanam in 4 ragas, keeping Simhendramadhyamam as the fulcrum.
IS there something to do with HNB asking saketaraman to ask atleast 4 ragas each alapana and taanam with any of the posts that we all had contributed just a wild guess.
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Vayoo Flute
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#7 Re: Saketharaman

Post by Vayoo Flute » 13 Jul 2018, 06:36

Watch Saketharaman showing his potential when he was a young kid:

https://www.youtube.com/edit?o=U&video_id=uIkLPvTpf_M
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