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Pune's Sawai Gandharva Mahotsav ends on a soulful note

Last day saw three generations of musicians coming together for a spellbinding performance.

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dna Correspondent

Updated: Nov 21, 2013, 01:44 PM IST

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It was a sublime experience to witness the performance of three generations of violin players at the 59th Sawai Gandharva Bhimsen Mahotsav on the concluding day on Sunday.

Violin virtuoso N Rajam made the concluding concert of the festival memorable, along with her daughter and two granddaughters. Her daughter Sangeeta Shankar has trained under her, and the legacy is being carried forward by Shankar’s daughters, Ragini and Nandini.

The Padma Bhushan awardee is credited with bringing a new realm into the world of classical music by introducing the Gayaki Ang, a technique which presents the vocal style of music on the violin. Ragini has completed her engineering studies, while Nandini is studying to be a chartered accountant. They picked up the right lessons from their mother and grandmother, as was evident from their skilled presentation. Despite performing with their grandmother and mother, they left a mark of their own at the festival.

Rajam chose Raag Jog to start with, and then the quartet went on to create a divine atmosphere with their performance. They later entertained the audience with the bhajan Payo Ji Maine and natyageet. On demand from music lovers, Rajam presented the natyageet, Narvar Krishna Samaan.

The co-ordination among the four was great, and with the able support of Ajit Pathak on the tabla, the experience was further enhanced.

Rajam recalled that it was in 1959 that she was invited by Pandit Bhimsen Joshi to perform at the Sawai. She felt that Panditji’s music was immortal and his presence would always be felt at Sawai.

The concluding day started with the performance of Omkar Dadarkar, the disciple of late vocalist Manik Verma. He learnt light classical under the tutelage of the legendary Girijadevi and music composer Shrinivas Khale.

He presented Raag Multani, and impressed music lovers with his concluding bhajan Radha Raman Govind Jai Jai. Padma Deshpande, granddaughter-in-law of Sawai Gandharva, revealed the beauty of Raag Sham Kalyan. Nagaraj Rao Hawaldar, Hindustani classical vocalist from Karnataka, started with Raag Yaman. Later Vyankatesh Kumar regaled the audience with his performance. The festival concluded with the performance of Prabha Atre, a tradition being followed at Sawai over the last few years.

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