The highest point of the programme, Ravi Kakshapathe, was the depiction of love in the verses and songs of Rabindranath Tagore. It was not clearly mentioned, but the poems and songs that were chosen, coupled with the flow of the programme indicated the shades of complexity and spontaneity in Tagore’s blend of ideas on this eternal human feeling.
The verses and the songs were well selected. Sonali Bhattacharya’s recitation attracted the audience. The clarity of her voice and her warm tone of expression made her presentations praiseworthy. Her performance of “Amay jodi monti debe” and “Tomare eto sahaje bujhi” left a mark on her listeners. The Rabindrasangeet presentation by Manoj Murali Nair was a charming experience. Manoj has the talent for singing the same song with a different flavour while keeping the beauty and the structure intact. His performance of oft-heard songs such as “Nitya tomar je phool phote”, “Tai tomar ananda amar por”, “Je raate mor duarguli”, “Sakhi bhabona kahare bole” and “Je chhilo amar swapanacharini” was worthy of praise. At the same time, he enchanted the audience with some less-performed songs such as “Ke bolechhe tomay bandhu”, “Jakhan esechhile andhokare” and “Amar moner koner baire”.
Sonali and Manoj concluded with a modern dramatic verse of Chitrangada. Although the script was weak, the generosity of the artists’ voices and their balanced emotional expressions created an impact on the listeners.
The two-day classical music festival, Dagar Bandhu Smarak Shudh Dhrupad Samaroh, which was organized by Dhrupad Sangeet Ashram, was a pleasure for the city’s classical music lovers. It commemorated the 50th anniversary of taking the Dagarbani-based dhrupad singing to Europe for the first time by Ustad Nasir Moinuddin Dagar and Ustad Nasir Aminuddin Dagar, two of the leading exponents of dhrupad. The programme commenced with the Saraswati vandana and the guru vandana by the students, followed by a pakhwaj recital by Sukhad Manik Munde. Amlan Halder supported him perfectly on the violin.
The Gundecha trio, comprising Umakant, Ramakant and Akhilesh, enthralled the audience with their spontaneous skills on the pakhwaj; they portrayed the inner charm of a raga with the alaap and the batt. The occasion was also graced by the dhrupad vocalist, Swami Kripakarananda. The performance of the Raga Lalita Gauri by Alaka Nandy was beautiful. She presented a dhamar in Raga Khamaj too; the depth of her voice made it arresting.
The renowned rudraveena artist, Ustad Bahauddin Dagar, was at his best in presenting the soul of the Raga Bihag with an extensive alaap. Ustad Sayeeduddin Dagar’s performance, with vocal support from his sons, Nafisuddin and Anisuddin, was interesting. He sang Raga Kambhoji, followed by some other compositions in different ragas. Tapas Das on the tabla accompanied him perfectly.