The best part being a Punekar is that one gets to immerse oneself in various cultural activities and be a part of vibrant group of connoisseurs. This is more true for the classical music domain. Along with the various classical music festivals by various groups , outstanding events are organized by SPICMACAY ,Pune. Among them my favorites are the overnight concerts. SPICMACAY showered a feast for classical music connoisseurs second time in 3 weeks interval. The Jan 31st-Feb 1st overnight concert was followed by this one over the Feb 21st-22nd weekend.
This is a special shout out to all the volunteers of SPICMACY , Pune for their superb organization of events. This is to convey a special “Thank You” from all the connoisseurs of Pune ,to all involved in organizing and managing these wonderful overnight events !
Overnight events are always enjoyable and are sometimes far more fun than the long festivals of classical music organized over three-four evenings ! The best part of these overnight concerts is that they have the old “jalsa” type feel with 4-5 artists performing one after other from Dusk to Dawn ! As the dawn appears , the “true connoisseurs” persist and become more awake ! Sometimes the true gems emerge early at dawn with that Lalat or something like a contemplative Ahir Bhairav- Nat Bhairav !
Here is a report of the overnight Concert starting with the lineup of artists :
1. Pt. Sandeep Deshmukh 9pm to 11pm
2. Pandit Nayan Ghosh 11pm to 1am
3. Mrs. Nandini Bedekar 1am to 3am
4. Pt. Rajendra Kulkarni 3am to 5am
5. Dr. Alka Deo Marulkar 5am to 7am
The concert evening opened with a Gwalior gharana trained vocalist Pt Sandeep Deshmukh with Bageshree traditional bandishes starting with a Vilambit alaap. That was followed by a very lively Sohoni “Jiyara re” (जियरा रे ) and a tarana that got a thundering applause from audience. He concluded with a Thumri of Bade Gulam ali Khan. He was very well supported on Tabla by Shrikant Bhave and on Harmonium by Suyog Kundalkar. On vocal support and taanpura, were two of his disciples, Saurabh Naik and Chaitanya Joglekar. He had to cut short his concert due to time constrain and the senior featured artist following his presentation, but he impressed the audience with the quality of his voice , his poise , knowledge and command over taans.
The second artist of the night was the featured artist , Pt Nayan Ghosh , this time performing on Sitar accompanied on Tabla by Pt Arwind Kumar Azad. One fun part of the concert was when Pt Nayan Ghosh decided to have a dialogue with the audience starting with his own introduction , his training as a child by eminent pandits and ustads in vocal music , tabla and sitar , his passion for music and his current research interests etc. This connect with the audience was a sign that something exquisite was on the plate ! He started with a long alaap in Khamaj and presented jod and zhala in raag Jhinjhoti . Pt Arwind Kumar Azad with his Banaras style Tabla , complementing the gayaki style sitar of Pt Nayan Ghosh, the recital was filled with playful laykaari , jugal bandi and some exquisite demonstration of Tabla playing. Audience was overwhelmed and the applause was thundering. He concluded the presentation with a Bhatiyali Dhun with a mix of Maand Khamaaj and Bangla folk tune. The audience wanted more but had to be content with this 2 hours of musical feast. The auditorium was filled with festive thunderous applause and presented a standing ovation.
A well deserved midnight break was needed at this time when the food stalls of tea , samosa, vada-pav, pattice was overcrowded and audience enjoyed the feast to their tongue too , filled with melodious music in their ears ! ( The next artist was Nandini Bedekar , hence many in audience decided to extend the break further for pet-puja and a stroll !)
Nandini Bedekar started with the Jaipur-Atrauli style Bhoop with the traditional bandish “pratham sur saadhe” (प्रथम सुर साधे ). The best part of this concert was that audience could enjoy the solo Harmonium of Suyog Kundalkar and Tabla of Sanjay Deshpande for a very long time and vocal part was just a filler , sometime disturbing too! She continued with “Sahela re aa mil gaaye , sapta suran ke bhed sunaye” (सहेला रे आ मिल गाये , सप्त सुरन के भेद सुनाये ). The concluding presentation was Suha Kanada chota khyaal “Jhanak Jhanak payal more baaje , kaise kar aaun durjan lokava jaage”(झनक – झनक पायल मोरे बाजे , कैसे कर आऊ दुर्जन लकवा जागे ) . If one wants to comment on this concert , then mediocre would be an overstatement. This presentation ended in 1 hour by 2.45 am to the relief of many!
It was by 3am when Pt Rajendra Kulkarni began his flute recital with a very pensive , contemplative and soothing alaap which had shades of Bageshree , Kanada , but was dominated by the “Kauns” . For many including me , it was difficult to decipher the raag based on the alaap. The final meend of the 30 minute alaap gave a good clue that it was neither Malkauns , or Bageshree nor any Kanada ! It was when the Tabla joined in for the jod that audience could guess the rare raag ! It was Mohan-Kauns a Malkauns with a komal gandhaar !
The Tabla accompaniment by Shrikant Bhave was soft and subtle , very much applauded by the audience. It was a perfect madhyalay that suited the soft baansuri and created tranquil contemplative ambiance of pre-dawn. This was followed by a gat in teentaal in Mohan Kauns ( popularized by Pt Ravi Shankar) . The next presentation of raag of the season , Basant in traditional gayaki style of Pt Pannalal Ghosh was a sweet , melodious and playful experience. During the presentation , Pt Rajendra Kulkarni demonstrated the special Roshanara Begum version of Shuddha Basant with different uses of madhyams popular in old vocal Kirana tradition. The gayaki style Basant bandish “Yendi Yendi , Yaali Yaali” was melodious and applauded by the audience for its familiarity of notes and tune. The finale was of raag Piloo demonstrating the gayaki style of Baansuri reminding many of Pt Pannalal Ghosh ! At the farmaaish of senior audience members , Pt Rajendra Kulkarni presented a short but very melodious Lalat , his playful flute complemented by soft and subtle Tabla of Shrikant Bhave.
At the finale of the overnight concert, was a stalwart of Jaipur-Atrauli gayaki , Dr Alka Dev-Marulkar. A senior , knowledgeable and hence extremely humble artist presented some of the gems at dawn welcoming the morning !
First was a Lalit Pancham , a trade mark of Jaipur-Atrauli starting with the vilambit “udat boond , khelat basant ban laal” (उड़त बूँद , खेलत बसंत बन लाल ) followed by drut “Ab tum vahi kyo na javo” (अब तुम वाही क्यों न जावो ) . The second was Gunakri ,that had a feel of Bhairav and Vibhaas, with vilambit bandish “Baaje Damaru haral trishuldhar” (बाजे डमरू हरल त्रिशुलधर ) followed by drut “Hey kartaar puri karo manaki ichcha” (हे करतार पूरी करो मनकी इच्छा )
In tune with the season , the Vidhushi , decided to present a Mishra Piloo horee with a Thumri baaj “Horee khelan kaise jaaun” (होरी खेलन कैसे जाऊं ) . The concert concluded with a Bhairavi bhajan composed by her spiritual guru Indiradevi , and set to Bhairavi by herself “Prabhu mai aai sharan tihaari” ( प्रभु मै आई शरण तिहारी )
A wonderful finale of classical concert season here in Pune… 10 hours of exquisite melodious music. Thanks again SPICMACAY , all its enthusiastic and truly professional volunteers , the wonderful and talented artists , accompanists and last but not least , the connoisseur audience of music without whose company the concerts could not be enjoyable ! Thank You !
Here are some of clicks of the concert (courtesy SPICMACAY volunteers )