A mesmerising game of gamak and meend
Portraying visual poetry of Bharatnatyam, Vidushi Alarmel Valli set off the second day’s (November 29) performance of Bengal Classical Music Festival 2013, dedicated o the memory of Pandit Barin Mazumder. Prior to that, chief guest Professor Emeritus Dr. Anisuzzaman Khan inaugurated the second day’s festival. Abul Khair, chairman of Bengal Foundation; Ravi Mathur, executive director of ITC-Sangeet Research Academy (SRA) and distinguished musicologist Alim-ur-Rahman Khan joined in the proceedings as special guests. Violinist Saket Sahu performed a romantic Raga “Behag” at the festival while Carnatic vocalist Vidushi Bombay Jayashri weaved a garland of melody with several south Indian ragas – Purvi Kalyani, Kharahar Priya (Kafi in North Indian Classical Music), Dharmavati (Madhubanti in North Indian Classical Music) and a North Indian classical music, Raga Behag. MS Manoj Shiva on mridangam, BV Ganesh Prasad on violin and Bangladeshi artistes Mahua Manjaree Sunanda and Rukhsana Karim Kanon on tanpura accompanied the versatile vocalist.
Renowned Bangladeshi classical vocalist and guru Asit Dey, first gripped the mood of the raga Puriya Kalyan by rendering aalap of the raga. The disciple of Pandit Amarnath, the seniormost disciple of Ustad Amir Khan, started off his vilambit bandish “Aj So Bana” performance, set on jhumra taal. The vistar ang of his performance was so decorative that was followed by bahelawa, ragdari and khatka and meend with some difficult application of the raga. He beautifully showcased the two ang — Puriya and Yaman — of the raga which reminded us of the sun’s mingling with the twilight glow and of greeting the full moon in the evening. Later, he presented a tarana on teentaal (Ta noom dere na ta da re dani) and a drut ektaal bandish “Maan Abodh Mora”.
Pandit Purbayan Chatterjee stood out among the featured artistes of the night. He started off his recital with performing aalap, jod and jhala, set on raga “Jay Jaijavanti,” pertaining to Thaat Khamaj. Jaijavanti depicts melancholic rasa and is quite similar to Raga “Desh”. Purbayan, a paragon of sitar, showcased his specialty — speedy gamaki taan performance together with huge vistar variation, touching all the four octaves with expertise. Music exponents, connoisseurs, critics, enthusiasts and the music lovers in general availed the awesome opportunity of getting to know the rare musical phraseology of Raga Jaijavanti through the performance. He created a musical mahol (ambience) at Army Stadium in Dhaka, appeasing the musical thirst of Dhaka music connoisseurs. The audience thoroughly enjoyed every stroke on sitar coupled with a balanced and sweet ragdari capturing all the ang, and lightning-fast ascends and descends. Purbayan also mesmerised the audience through rendering and reciting a bandish “Yare Maan Biyan Biyan,” originally composed by Ustad Amir Khan. Pt. Satyajit Talwalkar on tabla fashioned flutterings on his solo segments and sat sangat, along with a marvelous sawal-jawab, with the monsoon time raga Jaijavanti. And finally, the maestro captivated the hearts of the audience through his recital of folk tunes, including Tagore song “Bhenge Mor Ghar-er Chabi” and “Gram Chhara Oi Ranga Matir Poth”.
The highlight of the night was definitely the vocal music performance by Pandit Ajoy Chakrabarty. The living legend set off his part with a pristine performance of a melancholic Raga Malkauns. Pandit Yogesh Shamshi, an all-time great on tabla, accompanied the prolonged musical flight, showcased by Chakrabarty. Violinist Saket Sahu and supporting vocalists –Brajeshwar Mukherjee and Deborshy Bhattacharya also accompanied the evocative musical journey. The virtuoso first performed a meditative vilambit bandish “Khuda Ki Marzi”, composed the legend himself. His madhyalaya teentaal bandish “Mandar Dekhan De Sudama” was also meditative and connecting to higher forces. Chakrabarty’s rendition was like a complete surrender to the ultimate. He seemed to seek the best solution of all types of crises and mistakes through his rendition. He also presented a tarana (meaning ananda), originally composed by his Guru Pandit Jnan Prakash Ghosh. The advent of Arabian tunes amid the Bhairvi thumri “Ka Karu Sajni”, originally composed by the Thumri Maestro Ustad Bade Ghulam Ali Khan, performance seemingly augmented the enjoyment of the audience. Chakrabarty wrapped up his performance with performing a raga-based Bangla song “Jamini Holo Je Bhor Banshi Bajey Jogiyai,” set on raga Jogia. Noted music exponent and Editor of Star Arts and Entertainment, Sadya Afreen Mallick presented festival crest to Pandit Ajoy Chakrabarty. She also offered her sincere gratitude to the organisers and the music maestros of the festival on behalf of all Bangladeshi artistes.
Sitar veteran Ustad Rais Khan was the last but not the least performer of the starry night. The maestro along with his son Farhan Khan first presented raga Charukeshi in jugalbandi style. Later, the Ustad performed a composition, mingling an Afghani tune with a Bengali folk tune. Pandit Samar Saha on tabla exquisitely produced divine rhythms, including several outstanding otit tehai.
The event is being organised by Bengal Foundation in association with India’s ITC Sangeet Research Academy, supported by Square Group and BRAC Bank. The Daily Star and The Daily Prothom Alo are strategic partners to the event, with ABC Radio as radio partner.