IMPRESSIONS – KAGAZ KI KASHTI -AN IMPRESSIVE GHAZAL OFFERING BY ARCHANA UDUPA’S GANDHAAR

AN  IMPREGNABLE   TRIBUTE  TO  MOVIE  GHAZALS   OF GOLDEN  ERA

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impressions 11Music is all about the sublime content, substance and the connoisseurs who’re enthralled by those lilting moments aided by pulsating music through gifted musicians of yore.

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impressions 12IMPRESSIONS’ provided all these sumptuously on Friday, 09 June 2017 evening @ Chowdaih Memorial Hall, Bengaluru under the aegis of our own ARCHANA UDUPA’S GAANDHAR Forum

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IMPRESSIONS 1.jpg 4Popular Singer Vijayaprakash, Actor and born Singer Sunil Raoh, Veteran Nagara Srinivasa Udupa along with a seasoned Archana herself took the audience back to memorabilia of Grand old Movie Ghazal hits, avidly followed by those discerning even today.

IMPRESSIONS 1.jpg 2May it be chartbuster movie ghazals from Kashmir ki Kali, Hum Dono, Arth or the Medley by Archana, consisting of  ghazals from movies Umrao Jaan or Nikah, not only all singers did perform Excellently but were very aptly accompanied by most gifted artistes on the instruments and percussions – Veterans and Young alike – to create an aura of its own alongside the most celebrated Trumpet Player of this era, the Legendary Sri Kishore Sodha, a treat to listen. Seasoned Percussionist Venugaopalaraju and Ace Guitarist Srinivasachar stole the thunder, were impeccable as always. Violinist Ranjan Beura, Drummer Arun Kumar, veteran Sitarist Sumarani, the very talented flutist Ashwini Koushik and other accompanists were just exceptional and excellent, filling in when solicited with their subtle underplay.  It would be embarrassing should some names miss while I wrote. Anchor Rubina deftly handled the show in her own bubbly infectious manner.

IMPRESSIONS 1.jpg 5Such musical treats always romp home by lilting nature, making the audience get glued to seats with effervescent songs presented in an aesthetic manner and style.

ARCHANA deserves a pat for organising memorable concerts of such magnitude to Bengaluru music connoisseurs year after year without entry fee, is a matter of pride that she’s resolved to return the adulation recieved, indicative in a befitting manner, needless to mention considering the huge involving expenditure for such an event.

impressions 9impressionsIt takes one’s emotional toll to manage such shows though looks very colourful at the outset since its not just the matter of bringing alive the music one yearns to listen after all, but also to satisfy the huge expectations, a challenge by itself as the acerbic tongues wag no end should something go haywire on the dotted day despite assiduous preparations. It’s easier said than done as everyone understands.

Let us celebrate music that suffices more than anything else !

 

 

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‘Chirantan’ A New Age Foundation, Pune initiative Concerts Enthrall Bangalore Music Connoisseurs

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28 March 2017 Canara Union, Malleswaram, Bangalore West hosts a sequence of concerts under the aegis of ‘Chirantan’ New Age Foundation Pune initiative enthralls invited audience in tribute to Hindustani Classical Doyen Legend Late Dr,Mallikarjun Mansur.

On view were Vidhushi Priyadarshini Kulkarni (Vocal), Biswajit Roy Chowdary (Sarod) followed by Dr.Nagaraja Rao Hawaldar (Vocal) IMG_20170328_203541.jpg

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PADMASHRI HARIHARAN REGALES AUDIENCE @KANTEERAVA STADIUM

Sunday evening, 27 Dec 2015, had an entertaining evening in Hariharan Live Concert at Kanteerava Stadium..an AFH initiative must be thanked (Art For Humanity) !!

Someone close sent vvip passes to make it more meaningful !!…but I had to say it was just one of many indoor concerts wherein I’ve heard Hariharan perform much better.

Must admit not being judgemental, female voices were a great disappointment and not even a patch on him, though the sound system and video coverage were fantastic..!

However, most invitees were unaware what for the ‘Art For Humanity’ meant after all and the initiative. Organizers should’ve taken care of creating awareness in Public mind by elaborating in detail about the admirable initiative, else the very purpose itself remains unfulfilled.

Thanks for Organisers nevertheless for not going overboard with overbearing endless speeches by dignitaries..!

In future, also may the organizers avoid major gaffe like introducing hon’ble union minister Sri Ananthkumar to the audience as Chief Minister!!

Let them not get offended by my opinion, but it’s been my earnest request to be more professional in approach as I also honestly feel to be a part of AFH indirectly by my participation.

‘Barkha Ritu’ concert @ Chowdaih Memorial Hall .. Befitting Tribute to Bharatrathna Pt.Bhimsen Joshi

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‘Barkha Ritu’ concert @ Chowdaih Memorial Hall on Saturday, 16 July 2016 evening was pure music incarnate. Most talented and prodigous U.Rajesh on Mandolin and popular Floutist Dr.B.Vijayagopal, senior Mridanga vidwan Sri Praveen and the mercurial Amrit Khanjira II enthralled a packed house first with an elaborate Ragam Tanam Pallavi in raag Varunapriya (Varunaroopini) – U Srinivas composition – was remarkable.

CHOWDAI 2.jpgThen followed Ustad Rashid khan’s legendary vocals comprising Mansoon Raagas Miyaan malhar, Ramdasi Malhar, Sur malhar and famed number ‘Yaad Piya ki’ from the evergreen memory.He was very ably accompanied by Tabla Nawaz Sri SHUBHANKAR BANERJEE, wonderful Pt.Joglekar on harmonium, imaginative Allarakha khan on Sarangi.

CHOWDAIH 1Both concerts left the audience wanting more as the time was up. It was befitting ‘Bharat Ratna Pt.Bhimsen Joshi tribute’, with series of concerts held under the aegis of Banyan Tree all over India alongside co-sponsors L & T.

chowdai 5Also had a chance to meet up all respected Maestros back stage with good friend Deepa Kishan, Kin Nagaraj Aithal P R, upcoming Sarangi nawazSarfaraaz Khan, his younger brother Sarod player Faraaz khan, connoisseur veena shastry, Master Atharva Rao.

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Overall a fulfilling experience

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THE MOST DESERVING PADMASHRI RECEPIENT Pt.M.VENKATESH KUMAR

Epitome of humility and politeness, Padmashri Awardee Pandit M. Venkatesh Kumar

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Born on 1 July 1953 @ Lakshmipura in the Dharwad region of northern Karnataka, Pandit M. Venkatesh Kumar is an Indian Hindustani classical vocalist. Also known renowned globally for his husk, vibrant classical singing style, he’s equally at ease and popular in singing Dasara Padas & Devotional songs.

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Venkatesh Kumar’s father late Huleppa was a folk singer leather puppet artist . In 1968, when he was 12, Kumar was taken by his uncle Sri Belagallu Veeranna to the Veereshwara Punyashrama in Gadag (central Karnataka), run by Puttaraja Gawai, the religious saint and Hindustani musician. Kumar lived and learned at the ashram for the next 12 years.

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Though he admits to the influences beyond other gharanas, chief among them being Ustad Bade Ghulam Ali Khan of the Patiala gharan,  Kumar unremittingly learnt Hindustani vocal in the Gwalior and Kirana gharana styles under Gawai, blending these styles effortlessly in his presentations, His guru was also trained in Carnatic music and as a result, there are traces of Carnatic elements – especially in his sargam patterns – in Pandit Kumar’s music

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14 years after leaving the ashram, Kumar got his first major break in 1993, receiving a telegram-invitation from the Bharat Ratna Pandit Bhimsen Joshi to perform at the Sawai Gandharva Sangeet Mahotsav in Pune that year. He had established a significant local reputation by then, but the performance in Sawai was the first step towards national exposure. However, he had to wait for almost another ten years before he became a regular on the national festival circuit. Since then he has featured in many National musical programs, and has been an “A” grade Artist of All India Radio since 1988.

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Pandit Bhimsen Joshi was asked whom he would like to listen to, on the occasion of  Maharashtra Government conferring the ‘Maharashtra Bhushan award’ in 2002, his first choice was Ustad Rashid Khan whose unavailability to perform pitch forked Pt.Kumar as his immediate choice. Such is the power behind Kumarji’s music.

Venkatesh kumar is gifted with a rarest blend of mellifluous, robust and vibrant voice,rich in tradition and deep in devotion. His vast experience and deep-rooted commitment has made him a name to reckon with through his performances  at all major music festivals in India and abroad.

Pt Kumar was most acclaimed for his Kannada vachana and dasara pada Singin in devotional music. Most Popular ones include “smarane saalade” of Nada Varshini Album. He also has multiple Devotional and Classical CD albums to his credit.

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Pandit Kumar holds a teaching job at the University College of Music, Dharwad. This commitment regularly forces him turn down concerts, but he refuses to quit the job that offered him stability at a time when concerts were hard to come by. He also received a post graduate degree in music from Gandharva Mahavidyalaya.

If there’s to be someone so deserving for the coveted PADMA Award, it ought to be Pandit M.Venkatesh Kumar and we Kannadigas feel elated and honored ourselves as the Nation salutes him in awe of his dedication, devotion and commitment to lift music to parochial heights.

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He has authored the text book of Music prescribed for the Examination conducted by the Govt. of Karnataka. Sri Venkatesh Kumar served as a faculty member at Music College, Dharwad University and taught Music to degree classes. Currently under retirement from the job, he is the proud recipient of several titles namely:

  1. Swarashree
  2. Sangeet Sudhakara
  3. Sangeeta Ratna
  4. Karnataka Rajyotsava Award (1999)
  5. Karnataka Sangeet Natya Academy Award (2007)
  6. Vatsala Bhimsen Joshi Award 2008
  7. Krishna Hangal Award (2009)
  8. Kendra Sangeeth Nataka Akademi Award (2012)
  9. Honorary Doctorate from Karnataka University, Dharwad (2014)
  1. Swara Laya Samrat (2014)
  2. Padma Sri Award by Government of India (2016)

Our Nation has many such proud sons. Honoring these great men who have turned their lives into live examples by legendary herculean efforts fighting poverty and lack of education through utmost dedication. We, the Nation honor ourselves by honoring these men of steely resolve and utmost humility. 

It’s matter of great pride for me listening to his heavenly music for more than 3 decades. He’s travelling to Sirsi for a concert while I called, but sooner he reverted to me on bang to accept my hearty wishes. Such humility from an Iconic person floored me. May their tribe grow in zillions.

‘CHIRANTAN’ A TRIBUTE TO PADMA VIBHUSHANA DR.MALLIKARJUN MANSUR

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‘CHIRANTAN’ & DEPARTMENT OF KANNADA & CULTURE IN KARNATAKA jointly conducted a simple yet meaningful felicitation in honor of Padmashri Awardee Pandit Sri M.Venkatesh Kumar last Sunday, 20 March 2016 under the aegis of Pune based NEW AGE FOUNDATION @ Canara Union, Malleswaram, Bangalore. CH 2Both 19 & 20 March evenings, venue was jam packed by connoisseurs of music, witnessing concerts by names to reckon, renowned Sarod exponent from New Delhi, Pt.Biswajit Roy Chowdary, Vocalist Pt.Ganapathi Bhat Hasanagi from Sirsi, Karnataka & Vidushi Aditi Upadhye. I felt damn lucky to attend back to back vocal concerts by Pandita Priyadarshini Kulkarni & Padmashri 2016 Awardee, our own Pt.M.Venkatesh Kumar on 20 March though.  CH 3

Pandita Priyadarshini Kulkarni’s New Age Foundation, Pune  jointly organized this memorable musical tribute to Hindustani Music Doyen Padma Vibhushan Late Mallikarjun Mansur in a befitting manner. She regaled the audience first by evening raga Behag followed by sonorous Nayaki Kanada presentation. Aptly accompanied her on Tabla and Harmonium were M/s Gurumurthy Vaidya and Anirban Chakroborthy. 

Also stood released to her credit on the occasion by Padmashri M.Venkateshkumar & dignitaries, was a pack of 2 CDs comprising of Morning & Evening Raagas rendered by Pandita Priyadarshini Kulkarni.

CH 12What followed later was vocal rendition by Pt.Venkatesh Kumar who virtually brings in so much of magnetism by his purity of music filled with devotion, gayaki ang and the tehrav in awe. If there’s a vocalist-musician holding sway on the audience wherever performed, it’s  to be none other than him. His music automatically connects to the audience so well. Raag Chayanat, Basant Bahar, Late Mansur’s favorite  ‘Akka Kelavva’ and the ever popular number on my request ‘Toredu Jeevisa Bahudhe”, his Vachana gayana enthralled the audience no end. CH 13M/s Keshav Joshi on Tabla and Anirban Chakroborthy on Harmonium very appropriately accompanied him. Humility personified & such a towering performer, Pt.Venkatesh Kumar deserves much more than what’s bestowed upon, for making musical inroads all over the globe. To me his Godly Gayaki directly descends from heaven as he weaves a magical web by his difficult taans made look simpler in presentation and the audience too won’t settle for his lesser either..! The magnificence of his singing is simply electrifying.CH 10So as his wont, Sri Vijayendra Athanikar lent a meaningful prologue to the invited audience both days. A word of appreciation must go to Pandita Priyadarshini Kulkarni, who not only performs but also carries lot of ethos & understanding for musical roots she inculcated from the Rich Jaipur Atrouli Gharana.CH 9.jpgHer earnest effort to felicitate the cynosure of all eyes, Pt.Venkatesh Kumar had to be on a high note and those present were neither disappointed by the enthusiastic response. Her accomplices including the Canara Union office bearers will have to be surely patted for hosting such a commendable event.CH 8Special thanks must go to other accompanying artistes giving sath to all musicians including my friend table Nawaz Sri Rajendra Nakod.CH 5I personally gained two more kind musically oriented persons in well-known & affable Sarod Exponent Pt.Biswajit Roy Chowdary and Sri Rajneesh Atre, an avid photographer and Senior Physics Professor from Indore who also delves on musicology once in a while – some of the photographs flashed here are his courtesy. Can you imagine, so passionate Sri Atre travels to most places just to cover these concerts. Truly  blessed we are if such quality music recurs over and again.CH 1 CHIRANTAN 2

PADMASHRI HARIHARAN ENTHRALS @ KANTEERAVA STADIUM

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Sunday, the 27 Dec 2015, had an entertaining evening in Hariharan Live Concert at Kanteerava Stadium..an AFH initiative must be thanked (Art For Humanity) !!

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Someone close sent vvip passes to make it more meaningful !!…but I had to say it was just one of many indoor concerts wherein I’ve heard Hariharan perform much better.

2.jpg

Must admit not being judgmental, female voices were a great disappointment and not even a patch for such huge outing, though the sound system and video coverage were fantastic..!

3.jpg

However, most invitees were unaware what for the ‘Art For Humanity’ meant after all and the initiative. Organizers should’ve taken care of creating awareness in Public mind by elaborating in detail about the admirable initiative, lest the very purpose itself remains unfulfilled.

Thanks for Organizers nevertheless, for not going overboard with overbearing endless speeches by dignitaries..!

In future, also may the organizers avoid  major gaffe like introducing hon’ble Union minister Sri Ananthkumar to the audience as Chief Minister!!

Let them not get offended by my opinion, but it’s been my earnest request to be more professional in approach as I also honestly feel to be a part of AFH indirectly by my participation.