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Open Air 'Hridayesh Utsav'

Wednesday, January 30, 2019
By Amarendra Dhaneshwar

'Hridayesh Utsav' which is held in the open space of the Parle Tilak High School is the biggest music festival of this metropolis. Earlier, the 'Jan Fest ' organized by the Indian Music Group used to be the only high profile open air music event. Over the last twenty five years, the 'Hridayesh' festival has surged much ahead in terms of audience participation and general impact. This year, 29th one in a row, attracted a big audience.

'Hridayesh' felicitates a senior musician every year for his or her contribution to music in general. This year elder musician Sharad Sathe, doyen of the Gwalior gharana was feliciatated and the 'Sangeeet Sevavrati' award which carried a cheque for Rs one lakh and a memento was presented to him by senior violinist Dr N Rajam.

Shashwati Mandal who opened the festival with her 'Marwa' is a highly competent singer. Her 'Marwa', in the initial phase sounded a bit sedate. She unleashed a flurry of taans while singing the fast paced ek taal bandish 'Ho Guniyan Mil' which was composed by Jagannathbuwa Purohit. She also sang a tappa which fell much below expectations. Rahul Sharma played the raga 'Rageshri' on the santoor with usual zest. Aditya Kalyanpur accompanied him on the tabla with gusto. Venkateshkumar, one of the most popular singer of our times, sang the raga 'Puriya' with practised ease. He also sang 'Pio Ri Maine' with feeling.

Mukul Shivputra , the singer whose music has a mystical touch and appeal, impressed the audience with his 'Bilaskhani Todi'. He could attract a capacity audience during a solo morning session. Budhaditya Mukherjee, India's ace sitarist was exceptionally brilliant. He played the raga 'Shyam Kalyan' which is rarely heard on the sitar. One recalls that the  maestro Halim Jaffer Khan used to play this raga. Budhaditya played it in a khyal style.
Each phrase was like a bright scintillating gem. He also played the raga 'Kamod' which is a challenge because of the similarity of note structures. Dr. N Rajam and her daughter Sangeeta wrote a fitting finale to the festival with their hour long 'Darbari. The long and well shaped glissandos were deeply moving. Anand Singh compered the show with distinction.

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