So I have a wonderful thing to blog about today!
The annual Birthday Concert of the Indian Music Group was celebrated on 12th Jan in St Xavier’s Campus, on Saturday in the most splendid way. Here’s how:
(a) Classical Vocal performance by Pt. Sanjeev Abhyankar :
The concert begins with Pt Abhyankar’s introduction to the Raag that he will perform, a basic primer about the bhaav and lyrical interpretation of the raag, for the audience. He starts with Raag Shuddha Sarang, accompanied by extremely talented musicians on the harmonium, tanpura and tabla. The aalaap gradually grows into the main body of the raag, and Pt Abhyankar has his listeners in absolute thrall. He sings ‘Din ki Puria’ next, and explains that it is a variant of the much popular ‘Puria’ raag with a single note changed. I personally enjoy this performance more as the raag is familiar (Puria and the similar Puria Dhanashri, simply wow raagas, these !). The next song is a Surdas ki vaani, a classical piece by created by the great saint, about Lord Krishna. Pt Abhyankar ends his part of the concert with a beautiful bhajan and rises to greet the audience whose claps resound throughout the huge and St. Xavier’s auditorium.
(b) Classical flute performance by Pt. Rupak Kulkarni:
The evening had more to offer. After Pt. Abhyankar’s wonderful renditions, the audience were in for a surprise. Pt. Kulkarni, one of his disciples (It feels weird to use the term disciple, as Pt. Rupak Kulkarni himself is very young), Mridangam maestro, Shridhar Parthasarthy and Tabla wizard, Ustad Fazal Qureshi (son of the late Ustad AllaRakha) created a heavenly musical atmosphere. Everyone in the hall were happily lost in the lilting melody of Raag Madhuvanti. (again a familiar Raag, thoroughly enjoyed). Shridhar and Ustad Qureshi were at their best, occasionally playing a sawaal jawaab of percussion. Next up was Raag Bhinna Shadja (heard this one for the first time, but was no less magical than the other performances). The concert ended with a short dhun, where all the maestros contributed equally in making the finishing stroke memorable.
Next on my list: The JanFest (IMG’s flagship event) that sees the most established stalwarts of Classical music perform at the Xavier’s Quadrangle ! Excited..