Wednesday, 12 December 2018

Jugalbandhi of chitra veena and violin artistes

Perhaps for the first time, women artistes playing on the chitra veena and on the violin performed in a jugalbandi concert – this happened on Dec.11 afternoon for the Trinity Arts Fest in Chennai.
Vocalist and instrumentalist Bhargavi Balasubramaniam played the chitra veena alongside senior violinist Dr. M Narmadha in a jugalbandi.
The concert was at R.R Sabha, Mylapore
“Murali Raghavan, the festival convener organised our combination. We met and practised only for 45 minutes and the rest we improvised on stage. Since the chitra veena is different its a challenge for me,” said Bhargavi after the concert.
“Chitra veena and violin go together very well. Chitra veena has no depressions so the artiste has to push the strings carefully. One has to be very clear and smart. Bhargavi, being a student of guru N.Ravikiran does an extraordinary job every time,” says Murali Raghavan.
  • Report and photo by J. Dheepthi

Film buff? There is an international film fest happen'

If you are in Chennai for the Season, and you are a film buff you can also catch some great World Cinema and the best Thamizh films at the annual Chennai International Film Fest that takes off on Dec. 13 evening - till 20th.

Theatres across the city will screen these films - you can register to get admission. All info at

Disappointed fans of Abhishek Raghuram

Fans of Abhishek Raghuram got a big disheartened when they got to know that a throat infection led to the artiste's concert cancellation at Vani Mahal on December 11 evening.

They took to social media to express their disappointment. One fan posted another post which said the singer faced his problem at a concert in Kerala.

Sid Sriram, who also sings in movies and has a large fan following took Abhishek's place that evening.

Chennai is about 25/24 degrees late evening - the chill has not set in. But this is the season when your throat gets infected or your nose begins to run.

At one concert in Luz, this young violinist had to keep her handkerchief around all the while.

Travails of artistes.

Tuesday, 11 December 2018

Tickets for concerts at Kalakshetra; the info

Tickets for concert at Kalakshetra are available at Rukmini Devi College of Fine Arts, Kalakshetra campus now.

There are no season tickets for the whole festival or programmes ( Dec 21 to Jan 2, 2019.

People can pay and collect the tickets at the college office. 

Call 044-24521169 for details

Monday, 10 December 2018

Two vadas, two coffees. Rs.120!

Two small masala vadas and two coffees.
Was it worth it?
The vadas, small, the coffee, just fine.

Opening evening at the canteen at Sri Thyaga Brahma Gana Sabha in T. Nagar ( Vani Mahal hall).
Going by that bill, our guess is that prices are a tad high here.

The quality of the food?
You tell us when you are there and tuck in some tiffin.

You can write for this Blog on the concerts, the buzz at the halls and the food too, but avoid reviews -

Tributes to Nedanuri Krisnamurthi

Sangeetha Kalanidhi Nedanuri Krishnamurthi garu's remembrance day was celebrated by his prathama shishyas Malladi Brothers at Thaligai Hall at Luz on  8.12.18.

The special invitees were 'Spencer' Venugopal, (a senior composer, singer and disciple of Brinda), GJR Krishnan,  Hamsadhwani R. Sundar and vocalist Radha Bhaskar.

GJR Krishnan recollected  his father Lalgudi Jayaraman's association with Nedanuri.  

R. Sundar, secretary of Hamsadhwani shared his father's (R. Ramachandran, journalist) disappointment that Nedanuri Garu was not decorated with Padma award by the Indian government. 

Radha Bhaskar came out with an anecdote. She recorded her first  interview with Nedanuri for Samudra magazine. But after reaching home she found that nothing has been recorded. She desperately wanted to have his interview. When contacted over phone he invited her to Vizag to do it again. She did that and got that conversation.

Malladi Ravikumar recollecd how Nedanuri in his last hours wanted him to sing the phrase 'Rama' repeatedly in the song 'sujana jeevana Rama'. 

This was followed by concerts of Malladi Vasavi on Amnnamacharya Krities, and Dr. Seshalatha on Ramadas Krities. 

- Report by V. Vasantha

Sunday, 9 December 2018

Chamber concert - R K Shriram Kumar solo on the violin

Senior violinist R K Shriram Kumar will perform solo on Sunday morning ( dec.9) at the chamber concert of the Musiri Chamber Concert series that is held in a house located off Musiri Subramaniam Road.

It starts at 10 a.m. It is open to all but space is limited here and rasikas sit on the floor around the artistes. Makes for a very intimate experience.

The house is located in a lane that runs on the left after the Waitrose supermarket store at the junction. Contact 9444028677.

Saturday, 8 December 2018

Mudhra's opening evening

Mudhra's festival launch is sedate. At the Ramakrishna Mission School auditorium off North Usman Road in T. Nagar not more than 100 people attend it. The launch was on Saturday, December 8.

The launch started 20 minutes late. Thankfully, emcee Dr Radha Bhaskar kept the show well-paced.

It was an evening to award dance guru Chitra Visweswaran; and doing the honors were the gurus the Dhananjayans.

Mudhra, run by Bhaskar and Radha and backed by Nalli Kuppuswamy will celebrate the 25th edition of this fest next year and they have big plans for it in 2019.

Bhaskar says they intend to bring Carnatic music into the homes of seniors via their Web-based radio and tv channel. "Going beyond the sabha confines," as he put it.

Oh those long, long speeches and delayed launches

How boring can you make of a festival inauguration?
We got a taste of it when the Trinity Arts Fest got underway at R R Sabha, Mylapore. There were dozens of awards to be given - to the young, the seniors and to achievers. 

Then there were speeches to be made. Two minutes, the emcee suggested b ut that did not restrain Madurai T N Seshagopalan from rewinding for almost 15 minutes. Cannot fault him - he has lots of stories to unfold given a mike.

Guru Urmila Sathyanarayanan and her dancers must have fretted before their dance drama based on Meera went alive as the main recital of the opening evening.

The Singaporeans up their fest . . .

The Singaporeans are slowly making a mark on the Season. And this year, Singapore Indian Fine Arts Society (SIFAS) got Singapore Consulate General based in the city collaborate with the annual fest.
They even themed the fest - Alangkar.

The fest showcases talents of students of SIFAS, and their gurus. In a way, this stage, though early in the Season must be beneficial.
The smaller hall of the Music Academy was packed on Friday evening at the launch of Alangkar.

The opening show was unique - with the Singaporeans performing what was a melange of sounds and music - interweaving Chinese and Far East sounds with Carnatic as well as Hindustani music.
Cheryl and Riduan enjoyed themselves on their native percussion instruments and midway, as a Bharatanatyam and a Kathak dancer stepped in, the collage was grand.

Over two days on the Dec.8 weekend, other artistes will sing and dance at this venue.

It will be good to also have artistes from Sri Lanka, Malaysia, Reunion and elsewhere to have such a platform in the Season

Friday, 7 December 2018

This concert of Sanjay Subrahmanyam sold out

Sanjay Subrahmanyam's themed concert 'Thamizhum Nanum' this Saturday ( Dec.8) is sold out. 

A privately curated concert of only Tamil songs, it is on at The Music Academy.

Sanjay makes it a point to sing Tamil songs at his concerts and one can expect this this Season too.

Wednesday, 5 December 2018

Pattappa's to run canteen at Academy

The foodies among rasikas never tire of planning their own food tours; checking out the canteens.

Now, Music Academy is to have a new caterer - Pattappa's, the well-known caterer will now man the canteen in this campus.

A little birdie in the know says the new caterer promises great food.

The previous one was getting a tad tired. Even his stewards looked bored.

Once you taste the Pattappa food do share your experience. Mail -