Gokulashtami Concerts at Ulsoor

Sri Guruvayoorappan Bhajana Samaj Trust (SGBS) is conducting the annual Gokulashtami series of concerts at the Odukathur Mutt,Ulsoor, adjacent to Ulsoor Lake on Gangadharam Chetty Road.

Details are here at

SGBS Gokulashtami series concerts

The series is on until 23 August.

The SGBS Trust has been active in Bangalore for nealy 30 years now: to know more about the Trust, go to

about SGBS Trust

An organization worth of support from all the rasikas of this city.

Yesterday, the concert by Shri T M Krishna was just superb….

The accompanying artistes were:

Shri T K V Ramanujacharyalu- violin

Karaikkudi Shri R. Mani- mridangam

Shri V Suresh-ghatam

Here’s the review of the concert…do attend the rest of the series!

Shri T M Krishna led off with the SAveri varnam, and then went on to sing a very pleasing mix of well-known and rarely heard kritis…a good example of the latter was the Dikshitar composition “Brahadeeshwara” in the ragam
SAmagAnavarAli ( a janya of GAnamoorthi).

DhanyAsi, a much-less raga from the family of Bhairavi, was handled with great aplomb and followed up by “MeenAkshi” a kriti by Shyama Sastri.

The main raga taken up for rendition was Kharaharapriya, followed by that perennially favourite Thyagaraja composition, “Chakkani Rajamargamu”.

Actually, the list of compositions and ragas delneated is not so important to me as the sense of serenity and “nidhAnam” (sedate pace) that informed the whole concert. In the DhanyAsi piece, for example, Shri Krishna did not sing any kalpanAswarAs in the duritha kAlam aat all; the weight of the raga, and the serene pace of the keertanam were maintained intact because of this lack of hurry.

Kharaharpriya, too, was handled with this same sense of peace. The majesty of the ragam, and its melodic beauty,were given predominance. The riffs and fast phrases were present, but nowhere did they take precedence over the peaceful mood that the artiste set throughout.

Shri Ramanujacharyalu’s violin really “spoke”. His phrases for each ragam were very melodious, and his bowing and clarity were excellent. In the kalpanaswaram passages throughout the concert, he faithfully reflected the phrases and theermanams that Shri Krishna used, without ever upstaging the main artiste. It was exactly the role that a violinist should play in a Carnatic vocal concert…superb support, with great performances when the opportunity arose.

The percussion team was also in excellent form yesterday. It happened to be Karaikkudi Shri Mani’s birthday yesterday…and he managed to really surpass his usual excellence. Throughout the concert, he and Shri Suresh provided unobtrusive, yet very uplifting, support to Shri Krishna and the violinist; and they came into their own during a sparkling, 20-minute thani Avarthanam, where, in the rettai-kaLai chavukkam of Adhi tAlam, they played intricate combinations of thisram, khantam, and misram, and led up to a grand finale that had the audience clapping for several minutes.

In today’s fast-paced world, it is so refreshing to hear a concert like this, where melody and vidwat shine out of a stately approach to the concert rather than high jinks and playin g to the gallery. A deeply satisfying experience.

1 Comment so far

  1. Jayan (unregistered) on August 21st, 2007 @ 10:27 am

    Nice to see your post. Could not attend yesterday and was hearing lot of good reviews.

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