On Labor Day Sunday, rasikas in the New York area were treated to three hours of melodious Carnatic music at the Parvathi Hall in the Hindu Temple at Flushing.
Sri. Seshachary, part of the famed Hyderabad Brothers duo, was in great form on that day. Beginning with the Natakurinji varnam, he launched into the concert with gusto. He sang rare and unusual numbers like a Ganesha Krithi "Pranamaami Ganeshwaram" in Saveri, composed by the Sringeri Mathaadhipati as well as all time favourites like "Sabhapathikku verudaivam" (Gopalakrishna Bharati, Abhogi) and the main piece of the day, Thyagaraja's "Emi Jesitenemi" in Todi with a long and delicately nuanced alapana, neraval (on the line "kaama moha daasulai") and kalpana swaras pouring forth like a waterfall. Dikshitar's "Kaasi Visaalakshi" in PurviKalyani, also rendered in an elaborate fashion was a delight to the ears. Sri. Seshachary interleaved these long pieces with light and frothy palate cleansers like "Niravadi Sukhada Nirmalaroopa" (Thyagaraja, Ravichandrika), "Nenaruncharaa" (Thyagaraja, Malavi). The surprise hit of the day was a Ragam Tanam Pallavi in the relatively rare ragam Vagadeeshwari, with the Pallavi "Saraswathi namostute, shruti laya nivaasine", which was particularly apt for this sabha! The concert was rounded off with a few short and gentle pieces "Maayamma ani ne pilachite" (Shyama Sastry, Ahiri), "Naarayana ninna naamadasmaraneya" (Purandaradasa, Suddha Dhanyasi), "Karunai Daivame Karpagame" (Madurai Srinivasan, Sindhubhairavi), "Gayati Vanamali" (Sadasiva Brahmendra).
Sri. Seshachary was ably accompanied by Smt. Sandhya Srinath on the Violin and Sri. Srinath Bala on the mridangam. Vocal support was provided by Chi.Anil Chitrapu, Sri.Seshachari's student who had just finished his arangetram the previous day!
Smt. Sarada Chityala, Director of Shruti Laya, welcomed the audience and introduced the artists. A short musical appreciation was delivered by Smt.Rohini Ramanathan. Sri. Sreenadh Jonnavithula, Director of Shruti Laya, thanked the artists for their performance, and called on Smt. Sumathi Sumangali, the third Director of Shruti Laya, to present shawls to the artists.
Shruti Laya gratefully acknowledges corporate sponsor State Bank of India for their kind donation, which helped towards the expenses of this program.
With the generous and strong support of rasikas here, Shruti Laya looks forward to bringing many more such classy concerts to our listeners.