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Captivating music by the Aseem-Sameer duo

Wednesday, May 23, 2018
By Amarendra Dhaneshwar

The cultural geography of Mumbai extends to Thane/ Kalyan on one side and to Vasai/Virar on the other side, with Panvel and Kharghar thrown in. All these areas on the outer side of the island city are teeming with population and a sizeable chunk of them are culturally oriented. 'Kalanand', a group based in Thane and 'Khayal Trust', the city based organisation pulled in their resources and held an event titled 'Greeshmotsav' at the Sahayog Mandir Hall. The scorching sun seems to have sapped the energies of people. However, the enthusiasm of the musicians and music lovers remains intact. This must have prompted them to organise a music concert around the theme of 'Greeshmotsav'. The audience too responded with equal enthusiasm.

The programme began with a vocal recital by the Atlanta-based Preetam Bhattacharjee. He is a senior pupil of the Mewari gharana maestro Jasraj. Pritam sang khyals in the raga 'Multani'. Pritam sings in a deep voice and has a complete command of the idiom.'Gokul Gaon Ka Chhora' is about the love between Lord Krishna and his consort Radha. Pritam embellished the khyal with gamak, meend and several such alankars. He also sang a Marathi natyageet which was a pleasant surprise for the audience which literally lapped it up.

Aseem Chaudhury, veteran sitarist from Calcutta is a torchbearer of the Itawa gharana. He played the raga 'Nand' which is rarely played on the sitar. The 'vakra' movement of notes did not deter him at all. Ably assisted by his tabla accompanist Sameer Suryavanshi, he created fascinating sound patterns which caught the imagination of the audience. Sameer is an accomplished tabla player and has trained under the great Anindo Chatterjee. The Aseem-Sameer duo not only made the evening memorable but also made us forget the woes inflicted by the summer heat. A composition in the raga 'Pilu' was also played.

Suresh Bapat, a competent singer who is based in Thana concluded with khyals in 'Kamod' and 'Jaijaivanti'. Bapat sings in a ringing voice and his taan patterns exude raw energy. He has amassed a wealth of rare compositions from the erudite musician scholar, Dr. Ashok Ranade. He  gripped the attention of the audience till the end. Milind Naik and Pushkaraj Joshi on e tabla and the comely Supriya Joshi on the harmonium gave superb accompaniment to the singers.

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