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Guhan Venkataraman, a string to the future
Date: 29th December, 2012
Venue: Kamakoti Hall, Krishna Gana Sabha , T. Nagar
Time: 11.45 a.m to 1 p.m.
Artiste: Guhan Venkataraman (Veena), Vignesh Venkataraman (Mrindangam) and N. Narasimhan (Ghatam)

CHENNAI, December 29: Guhan Venkataraman, a sixteen-year-old teenager and a 12th grade student from California, gave a mesmerizing Veena recital for Krishna Gana Sabha on December 29, 2012.

Guhan’s mother, Dr. Lakhsmi, was a student of the great Veena exponent Mrs.Ranganayaki Rajagopalan. She introduced Guhan to this instrument at an early age. Subsequently, Guhan has also been learning from Mrs. Ranganayaki, whenever he comes to India.

His one-hour-and-fifteen minute rendition had all aspects of a good kutcheri. The concert began with the Panchratna Kriti of Thyagaraja “Entharo” in Sree Ragam. This song itself brought to light his command over the instrument. The gamakams sounded perfect, and the sound of his Veena was Heavenly. The next song was “Korina Varamasagu” composed by Papanasam Subramania Iyer raagam Ramapriya. The next pleasing kriti of Thyagaraja was “Tatva Meruga Tarama “ in Ragam Garudhadhwani. Guhan then went on to render “Enta Moddho” in Bindumalini, again a Thyagaraja kriti. In all these songs, he explored with Kalpana swarams, which were very pleasing.

The best was, however, the Raagam-Thanam in Keeravani ragam followed by the song “Kaligi Yundhe” by Thyagaraja. The neraval at the charanam and the Kalpana swarams were also a delight to listen. The tani aavartanam by Vignesh and M. Narasimhan was well complimented. The concert ended with “Kaliyuga Varathan” in Brindavana Saranga.

The Veena he played was the traditional one, and had not been modernized in any form. Even the string adjustments were made through tuning the traditional wooden tuners only and he managed it well by keeping the Shruti on the same perfectly.

In an age where many believe that this divine instrument may become a rarity, thanks to teenager like Guhan and his devotion to the instrument, the sound of Veena is sure to be heard a lot for many years to come.

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