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Music > Review
Anahitha & Apoorva @ Mudhra
10 December, 2019

Traffic jams have become the order of the day and it is always frustrating if you become part of one. It was therefore a late entry at the Infosys Hall. As I entered it was the raga Sankarabaranam that was in progress. And what was wafting across were the many hues this raga accommodates (and what a scale it continues to be, being enjoyed the world over!) in its alapana that came as a preface to Akshayalinga Vibho. The neraval line chosen “Badari Vana Mula Nayika” has its special quality that lends itself for a neraval and the sisters, Apoorva & Anahitha were at their best in terms of serenity (vishranthi) while carving this out. Their voice modulation techniques here were exquisite. There was a longing for more of this from the connoisseur. The overall supreme quality of this Dikshithar krithi was well-captured, well-maintained and well-presented.

They had made a pallavi in the raga Jayamanohari and told in so many words that it includes the significance of Mudhra’s silver jubilee year celebration in its sahithya. It ran like this: Maam paahi meenambike munijananuthe dhasamudhra raadhithe. It involves considerable guts and command to handle this dicey raga which “was a close sister of Sri Ranjani and Abhogi.” In the raga elaboration there were many phases that caught your attention and one of them: Top octave phrases that came up decoratively were at once mirrored on the lower octave faultlessly by Apoorva, and that calls for assiduous practice and proper orientation. The sisters seem to possess this in no small measure. The pallavi was in Khanda Jathi Thriputa Talam, with a poorvangam in Khandam and uttarangam in Chathurasram. The ragamalika at the thanam level had the ragas Nattai, Lalitha and Sahana. The ragamalika of swaras featured Bowli, Jayanthasena and Saveri. Anahitha explained that the raga Jayamanohari “thrives on Dha Sa Ni Dha usage and they had made a choice of these 3 ragas (in the swara segment) that also makes use of the same Dha Sa Ni Dha prayoga”

Vananai Mathi Soodiya Maindhanai (வானனை மதி சூடிய மைந்தனை) from Thirukurundhogai (திருக்குறுந்தொகை)in Kiravani, Smaravaram Vaaram in Sindhubhairavi of Sadhasiva Brahmendrar and a Thillana in Behag composed by their guru Chitravina Ravikiran made the basket full.

Vijay on the violin after some initial moments of uncertainty during the initial swara-session that involved some pace-changing, soon recovered to negotiate the nadai-mixed pallavi and the stupendous range of ragas presented by the sisters with confidence.
Sumesh Narayanan on the mridangam and morsing vidwan N Sundar were fully alert to the pallavi stint and exchanged their laya accompanying judiciously. While the morsing chipped in at the appropriate times the duo generally played according to the tenor of the concert, swashbuckling or sedate.

But then if you handle such a countless (I for one lost count!) number of ragas in a single cutcheri, what will the rasikas take home or retain? What will linger? Wouldn’t it be an overload,overflow? All the same the sisters displayed an enviable dynamism and were doubly sure where they were standing all the while. In effect they had stitched the concert and its performance style admirably -all stitches in-tact and not a sign of sagging and done with professional planning and execution.

This concert was part of the Isai Vizha of Mudhra and was held at Infosys Hall on 9th December @ 6.30 p.m.


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