Gayathri Venkataraghavan

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Maharaja Swathi Tirunal concert at SSVT Baltimore on 20 Sept 2014

Maharaja Swathi Tirunal Concert at SSVT Baltimore on 20 Sept 2014

Concert dedicated to the genuis Mandolin Sri.U.Srinivas

Pondering about Maharaja Swathi Tirunal and his prolific compositions made me wonder ,if the Lord meant for such genuises to just bring a downpour of their ideas and take them away quickly, before the world can fully wake up to their greatness. Maharaja passed away at 35. In that short life span he had composed from Tana Varnams , pada varnams,kritis, Javalis, Operas, Utsava prabandhams Group Kritis like Navaratri kritis, Navavidha Bhakthi Kritis, Bhajans to Thillanas . His court had the unique privilege of playing host to a number of great musician composers .His Dridha Bhakthi to the Lord and his longing to be at the Lotus feet of Padmanabha reflect in all his kritis. He has had repeated visions of Gods and Goddesses as his kritis suggest.In his Thodi Kriti on Goddess Saraswathi Bharathi Mamava he talks about the aroma that he associates with the appearance of the Goddess. “Bhasura Chandana Mrigamada Kusuma Suvaasita Gatre ” he says. What a Bhaktha!

We were in deep sorrow that day given the fact that one of the artists dear to all of us,Mandolin Sri.U.Srinivas had reached heavenly abode at such a young age. Tanjore Murugabhoopathi anna who had played for him from some of his first few concerts through his career was so upset. We were thankful that we could offer a musical homage to the young wizard.

It was a blessing to sing as part of the Swathi Tirunal day celebrations in Baltimore. The audience was so very receptive to the kritis we performed . As Maharaja is one of my favourite composers, I enjoyed putting this list together and with Mysore Srikanth and Bhoopathi anna we were thankful that we could offer our music to the memory of the boy wizard and genuis who would never grow in our minds but stay as charming and small as he was, when he was introduced as a child prodigy.

1.Pahi Sripate-Hamsadwani-Adi
3.Bhavativiswasome-Mukhari-Misra chapu(From Navavidha Bhakthi-Sakhyam)
4.Paalayamam-kamas-Adi-(on Lord Siva)
5.Sumasayaka-Kapi and Ragamalika-Pada Varnam -Roopagam
6.Karunakara madhava-Begada-Roopagam
7.Bharathi Mamava-THodi-Adi-(Navaratri Kriti)
10.Aliveli-Kurinji-Misra Chapu-Javali
11.Ragamalika Slokam
12.Bhavayami Raghuramam-Ragamalika-Roopam
13.Mangalam Bhujagasayinom