Indian Art Music concerts in Barcelona

Kaustuv Kanti Ganguli from IIT Bombay (India) and Vignesh Ishwar from IIT Madras (India) visited MTG for a research stay and as a part of their visit, two concerts were organized jointly by CompMusic and Phonos. Spread over two days, the Carnatic and Hindustani music concerts were preceded by a lecture demonstration (lec-dem) to help the audience understand and appreciate the music better. The concerts and lectures were held at Arts Santa Mònica, Barcelona. Both the concerts were well received by the audience, with packed halls. We have multitrack recordings of both the concerts which would be very useful for research and analysis.    

Carnatic Music Concert

The Carnatic Music Concert was held on 19/06/2013. It featured Vignesh Ishwar on vocals, Kiruthika Nadarajah on the violin and Ajay Srinivasamurthy on the Mridangam. The lec-dem by Gopala Krishna Koduri mainly focused on introducing Carnatic music to the audience. After an introduction to the extent and geographic distribution of Carnatic music, the concepts of Swara, Raga, Tala and different musical forms were discussed and demonstrated. 

The flyer for the concert is here.
The full concert video is on YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fy4lUqwO8Zs
 
The concert program: 
1. Sarasuḍa
Rāga: Sāvēri, Tāḷa: Ādi, Composer: Kottavāsal venkatarāma ayyar, Form: Varṇaṁ
A varṇaṁ is a musical form that is replete with the minute nuances of the melody. It is sung in two or three different speeds. 
 
2. Sogasugā Mṛdanga Tāḷamu
Rāga: Śrī ranjani, Tāḷa: Rūpakaṁ, Composer: Tyāgarāja, Form: Kṛti, Svaraṁ
Kṛti is the most performed compositional form in Carnatic music. It has three different sections and often is interspersed with improvisation. The piece includes a short melodic improvisation. Svaraṁ is a melodic improvisation sung as melodic solfège phrases.
 
3. Ninnu Vinagā
Rāga: Pūrvīkaḷyāni, Tāḷa: Vilōma miśra chāpu, Composer: Śyāmā śāstri, Form: Rāgaṁ-Kṛti-Neraval-Svaraṁ
Rāgaṁ/ālāpana is an unmetered rendition of a rāga using permitted notes in structures and phrases unique to the raga. It is rendered in different speeds, with a gradual increase in tempo and complexity. Neraval is an extempore construction, elaboration and improvisation of svaras for a particular line in the kṛti, within the framework of a tāḷa. This piece starts with an ālāpana, and also includes neraval and svaraṁ.
 
4. Nīrajākṣi Kāmākṣi
Rāga: Hindōḷaṁ , Tāḷa: Rūpakaṁ (vilaṁbita), Composer: Muttusvāmi Dīkṣitar, Form: Kṛti
In this piece, rūpakaṁ tāḷa progresses at half the speed with a double counting of each beat, and hence consists of cycles of 24 beats. 
 
5. Padavi nī sadbhakti
Rāga: Sālaga Bhairavi, Tāḷa: Ādi, Composer: Tyāgarāja, Form: Kṛti
 
6. Śrī Raghuvara Apramēya
Rāga: Kāṁbhōji, Tāḷa: Ādi (vilaṁbita), Composer: Tyāgarāja, Form: Rāgaṁ-Kṛti-Nereval-Svaraṁ-Tani Āvartanaṁ
This is the main piece of the concert and starts with an ālāpana, followed by the kṛti, nereval and svaraṁ. The tani āvartanaṁ (mṛdangaṁ solo) at the end of the piece showcases different rhythmic patterns that can played in this tāḷa. In this piece, ādi tāḷa progresses at half the speed with a double counting of each beat, and hence consists of cycles of 16 beats. 
 
7. Sancāra Dadara
Rāga: rāgaṁalika, Tāḷa: Ādi, Composer: Jayadēva, Form: Aṣṭapadi
Rāgaṁalika literally means a garland of rāgas, and this piece is sung in the rāgas mōhana, vasanta, yaman kaḷyāṇi and sindhu bhairavi. The composition is a hymn of eight verses from Gīta Gōvinda and symbolizes eternal love and supreme devotion. 
 
8. Śṛngāraṁ Kṣitinandini (Ślōkaṁ)
Rāga: Rāgaṁalika, Composer: Bōdhēndra Sarasvati, Form: Ślōkaṁ
A ślōkaṁ is a poetic verse. Though without a defined musical meter, it has a defined poetic meter. This ślōkaṁ is from Śrīrāma karṇāmṛutaṁ, which is a prayer to Lord Rāma. 
 
9. Sapasyāt Kausaḷya
Rāga: Jaunpuri, Tāḷa: Ādi, Composer: Paṁcapākēśa Śāstri, Form: Kīrtana
 
10. Tillāna
Rāga: Pūrṇacandrikā, Tāḷa: Ādi, Composer: Rāmanād śrīnivās ayyangār, Form: Tillāna
Tillāna is a rhythmic form widely used in dance performances. It includes the rhythmic syllables of mṛdangaṁ in the composition along with the lyrics. 
 

Hindustani Music Concert

The Hindustani Music Concert was held on 21/06/2013 (Fri) with Kaustuv Kanti Ganguli on vocals and Tapan Bhattacharya on Tabla. The lec-dem by Sankalp Gulati was aimed at introducing Hindustani music to the audience. Introducing Hindustani music, its geographical extent, origins, evolution and influences through centuries, the main demonstration included the evolution of a raag through a process of various transformations starting from swars. A discussion of the forms and gharanas completed the lecture. The lec-dem can be found on YouTube at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2eIdDDCKpi0
 
The flyer for the concert is here.
The concert video is on YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w6546X1-MF0
 
The program:
1. Pūraṇ Kar Mann Kī
Rāg: Śrī, Tāl: Jhaptāl, Composer: Gnan Prakash Ghosh, Form: Alāp & Baḍā Khayāl
Baḍā khayāl is a slow/medium tempo composition; this song describes one’s prayer to God for fulfillment of one’s wishes.
 
2. Darśan Dēhō Śaṁkar Mahādēv
Rāg: Kalyāṇ, Tāl: Tīntāl, Composer: Gnan Prakash Ghosh, Form: Short Alāp & Chōṭā Khayāl
Chōṭā khayāl is a medium/fast tempo composition; this song describes a prayer to lord Shiva.
 
3. Dīṁ Tōm Ta Na
Rāg: Naṭ-Bhairav, Tāl: Ēktāl, Composer: Gnan Prakash Ghosh, Form: Aucār & Tarāna
Tarāna has only onomatopoeic syllables; generally composed in medium/fast tempo.
 
4. Kaṭe Nā Biraha Kī Rāt
Rāg: Miśra Pīlu, Tāl: Jat, Composer: Bade Ghulam Ali Khan, Form: Ṭhumrī
Ṭhumrī is a form of light classical music where lyrics play the major role; this song describes the grief in absence of one’s beloved. 
 
5. Rāg-mālā
Rāg: Ten Thāt-Rāgs, Tāl: Dādrā, Composer: Gnan Prakash Ghosh, Form: Dādrā
This song is a garland of all ten basic scales (Thāt) of Hindustani music; this shows the characteristic structure of each rāg.
 
6. Bājē Muraliyā Bājē
Rāg: Miśra Paṭdīp, Tāl: Bhajni Keharwa, Composer: Traditional, Form: Bhajan
Bhajan is a devotional form of music with high priority on lyrics and sentiment; this song is a description of the amazement created when Lord Krishna plays flute.
 
7. Bahē Niraṁtar Anaṁt Anaṁdadhārā
Rāg: Khamāj, Tāl: Jhaptāl, Composer: Rabindranath Tagore, Form: Tagore Song
Tagore song is highly enriched with lyrical significance; this song describes how positive energy flows in the form of joy continuously in a never-ending fashion.
 
8. Mā Jār Ānaṁdamōyī
Rāg: Miśra Kāphi, Composer: Traditional, Form: Ṭappā
Tappa is a regional folk form of light classical music; this song is a prayer to the Goddess ‘Śyāma-Mā’. 
 
9. Babhāni Dayāni Mahā Bākya Vāṇi
Rāg: Miśra Bhairavi, Tāl: Jhaptāl, Composer: Traditional, Form: Bhajan
This is an example of Bhajan where the rāg elaboration also finds its place; this song is a description of Goddess ‘Mā Durgā’.
 
10. Ślōka
Rāg: Miscellaneous, Source: The Vēdas, Upaniṣats & others, Form: Chanting
Sanskrit slokas are chanted to create a meditative, calm and peaceful environment; this piece is a garland of Sanskrit ślōkas composed spontaneously in different rāgs.