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When the young veteran takes centrestage
CHENNAI, December 11: Young calf knows no fear, they say. Abhishek Raghuram was unbridled, as he sang with gusto for nearly three hours for Brahma Gana Sabha on the evening of December 6. Often times, looks can deceive onlookers. He wears a frail frame. The music inside, however, is vibrant. Flowing gently at times, and dropping like a cascade on other occasions, his music brings the myriad moods in a telling manner. A striking feature of his recital that evening was the ease with which he connected to fellow-musicians on stage. He egged them on with intermittent ``ballays and sabashs’.

A season or two ago, he got a standing ovation from a full-house audience at The Music Academy. At Petachi Auditorium, it wasn’t full-house though. Yet, it held him in admiration and awe. There wasn’t a dull moment, as Abhishek served a pristine fair to famished minds. He sent the audience into a trance after each and every raga improvisation, swaras or sangatis. Abhishek Raghuram was so brilliant while he chose Vasanta for an expansive treatment. “Seethamma Mayamma” was aesthetically delivered. His concert took one to a nostalgic tour of former times of vidwans such as Madurai Mani Iyer, GNB and others. There is something unique about this young artiste in terms of musical skill, creative quality and precision delivery.

He surprised at the beginning with a Neelambari pada varnam of Lalgudi Jayaraman “Senthil Nagar Mevum”. It was delightful to listen. `Sarasiruhanana’ of Thyagaraja in Mukhari was racy kriti. The alapana in Darbar was melodious, and the Thyagaraja’s “Ramabhi Rama Ramaniya Nama” proved fabulous to listen what with the clarity in his diction. Madhyamavathi was elaborate, and his breath-taking sancharas brought to fore the holistic aspect of this raga. This was followed by “Saravana Bhava Guhane”, Papanasam Sivan kriti. Purandaradasa’s “Yare Rangana”(Hindolam) and the Thillana fitted the concert perfectly well. It was wonderful to see this youngster sticking to tradition. Violinist Vittal Ramamurthy and Mridangist Anantha R. Krishnan perked up the concert, even as they consciously led the focus firmly on Abhishek.

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