- Sandhyavandanam Madhva Muni Rao, Bangalore
email: email@example.com /
I attended a Lec-Demo of Shri Vijay Siva on raga
lakshanas of Devakriya, Manjari, Devakriya.
Devamruthavarshani and Karaharapriya at the Music
Academy on 18th December, 2010.
Vijay Siva played some of the doyens and legends
recordings - Kittappa, Semmengudi Srinivasa Iyer and
Pattammal- singing the kriti 'Everani Ne' of
Thyagaraja in Devamruthavarshini and rightly pointed
out that all the doyens had liberally used varjya
swaras of Devamruthavarshini or the swaras of
karaharapriya in their renditions. He took the stand
that he would also render the kriti in the same
patanthara, learnt from his guru, to continue the
tradition, unquestioningly. There was no conclusion
at the end of the question and answers session, at
the end of the Lec-Demo.
This is a typical case of "Dharma Sankatam". Keeping
the ideal of patanthara discipline and the tradition
of Bani of illustrious Guru can create dharma
sankatam, such as the one discussed here.
During the raga lakshnas lec-demos at the Music
Academy in the late 50' or early 60', similar issue
did come up. It was concluded that even though
primacy is for lakshya over lakshana, the artist(s)
should strictly stick to lakshana, once lakshana is
formed, accepted and fixed. Occasional and
unintentional lapses by the usage of varjya swara(s)
for the sake of rasashrishti/rasanubhavam by the
veterans should not be subjected to undue criticism
(Subbudu's effects). Just like poets are given
poetic license for any transgressions of the
grammar, the veteran performer also to be given
similar license. If every artist takes the license
for granted, the lakhana suffers and the unique
identity of the raga (rare one) is lost, for ever.
The tradition demands that such heritage should not
be lost. All those artists, including Shri Vijay
Siva, with ideals of strictly adhering to the
Sampradaya or Tradition, need to make the necessary
corrections in their patanthara and renditions. By
doing their duty as required by the
sampradaya/tradition, they are not doing any
disservice to their Guru(s).