Veena concert by Sri.Rajhesh Vaidhya
Venue: Garland, TX
Date: April 22nd 2011
Let me begin with the ending. “It was electrifying”.
Now I will launch into the details.
Sri.Rajhesh Vaidhya was accompanied by Sri.Karaikurichi Mohanram on “Mridangam”, Sri.Sivaramakrishnan on “Ghatam” and Shyam Murali on “Kanjeera”. The concert began with a composition by Dr.Bala Murali Krishna called “Amma Anandadayini”. It began slowly and gracefully and soon, the enrapturing bells of “Veena” along with the “Dhim Tak” of “Mridangam”, “Kanjeera” and “Ghatam” filled the performance hall with tremendous speed.
The next composition was “Vaatapi Ganapathim” in “Raaga Hamsadhvani”. A pleasant surprise was when suddenly half way through, the “Raaga” changed. I believe this is a special treat for instrument listeners. Again this composition was marked by a very artistic and skillful rendition.
The next composition was the song “Naadalolane” in “Raaga Kalyana Vasantham” and “Taala Roopaka”. It was very different and exceptional, as it seemed like there were two instruments that were being played. Sri. Rajhesh Vaidhya is known for his unique sound techniques on the “Veena” and this composition demonstrated just that. There were these traditional Carnatic music notes, and then there were very modern contemporary notes, that gelled so well with the traditional ones, to create a lovely potpourri.
The next composition was “Brochevarevarura”. Sri.Rajhesh Vaidhya began it with the “anupallavi” “O Chatura” instead of the “pallavi”, which was again an unusual twist.
During the concert, Sri.Rajhesh Vaidhya explained about the “Veena” that he was playing. It is called “Madhura Veena” and was designed and sold by Saptaswara Musicals(http://www.saptaswara.in/ ). It has an inbuilt microphone and a 9 V Battery. It also includes equalizer. It can be disassembled and is very portable.
The next composition was “Ganamoorthe”, in “Raaga Gaanamoorthi” and “Taala Adi”.
The next composition was in “Raaga KadanaKutoohalam” called “Raghuvamsha Sudha”. This is specially an instrumental song with very fast and complex notes. His style was slightly different has he interspersed styles of Sitar and Mandolin in it. Sri.Rajhesh Vaidhya mentioned that usually people have this notion that instrument playing is a bit slow and dull. But with some innovation and technique it can sound very interesting. This composition moved from fast to faster and to fastest…
Next was the “Raagam Taanam Pallavi” rendition that started off with “Kamavardhini”. Then he moved on to so many beautiful “Raagas” like “Rasika Priya”, “Chakravaka”, “Kalyani”, “Hamsanandi” etc. He changed “Raagas” so seamlessly and effortlessly, it seemed like trance.
It seemed to me that all these “Raagas” had taken the form of beautiful dancers. And each one of them would come on a catwalk to show off her charms.
The “Pallavi” was “Arul Tarul Jagadguru Chandra Shekhara Anusham Dinattil Avadarikke”. It also included a highly energetic “TaniAvartanam” on the “Mridangam”, “Kanjeera” and “Ghatam”.
I have only heard it from Sri. Chitti Babu. But to listen to his student performing was wonderful. This was followed by multiple compositions in a very fast mode like – Wedding Bells by Sri. Chitti Babu, “Kannathil”, “Jagadoddharana” , “Ayyani Waa” in “Raaga SindhuBhairavi” , “Tillana” , “Bhagyada Lakshmi Baramma” etc.
The accompanying artists were all masters of their own instrument, matching up to the speed and technique of Sri.Rajhesh Vaidhya.
Sri.Rajhesh Vaidhya’s music is so enthralling and invigorating. The artist in him seems so free and it looks like the artist has become the heavenly instrument the Veena to create the art. The other differentiating aspect is his innovation. As Robert Frost said – “Two roads diverged in a wood, and I,I took the one less traveled by, And that has made all the difference.”.
MusicNamaste wishes Sri. Rajhesh Vaidhya the very best of luck in all his future endeavors.