Ganesh & Kumaresh with Giridhar Uduppa Ganesh & Kumaresh
(Carnatic Violin Duet)
Neyveli Venkatesh (Mridangam) &
Giridhar Uduppa (Ghatam)

Sunday, June 15, 2003, 6:00 pm


Saint Paul Student Center Theater
University of Minnesota, Saint Paul

About the artists:

Ganesh and Kumaresh learnt to play the violin from their father and Guru Sri. T.S. Rajagopalan. In their career already spanning over 2 decades, these brilliant musicians have created a distinct niche for themselves and are very popular for their entertaining performances. They have toured all over the world and have performed alongside the great Zakir Hussian, T.H. Vinayakaram, John McLaughlin, Steve Thornton and many others.

Neyveli Venkatesh learnt the Mridangam from the veteran Mridangam artist Sri. M.N. Kandaswamy. Venkatesh is a solid performer who embellishes musical phrases with delightful rhythmic accompaniment. He has traveled widely and has performed all over the world.

The youngest member of the group, Giridhar Uduppa, learnt to play the Ghatam under Smt. Sukanya Ramagopal and later under Sri. V. Suresh. A growing star among the younger generation of percussionists, Uduppa is very sharp and quick with his contributions during performances and excels in the solo Thani-Avarthanams. This is his first visit to the US.

(Courtesy: Prahalad Parthangal)

Mr. Ganesh and his troupe arrived at the St. Paul Student Center Theatre, University of Minnesota, St. Paul Campus at about 4:00pm. Unfortunately, Mr. Kumaresh could not make it to the show due to some family emergency. However, Mr. Ganesh, in utmost honesty, made up for the absence of his partner. Mr. Ganesh gave an enthralling solo violin concert. He was ably supported by Mr. Neyveli Venkatesh on the Mridangam and Mr. Giridhar Uduppa on the Ghatam.

Mr. Ganesh began the concert with the popular "Navaragamalika varnam", followed by a brief alapana in Reetigowla. Mr. Ganesh chose to sing the first few lines of the kriti, "Tatva mariya taramaa" by Papanasam Sivan, and then completed the anupallavi and charanam on the violin. This was followed by "Entharo Mahanubhavulu" in Sree ragam by Thyagaraja, wherein he sung and played the violin alternatively through the charanam part. Next, he played "Sobhillu Saptaswara" in Jaganmohini by Thyagaraja, and sang a composition in Begada by Purandara Dasa. Then came an elaborate alapana in Panthuvarali. The kriti chosen was "Siva Siva Siva" by Thyagaraja. Following the kriti, there were some exquisite kalpana swaras played, and some entertaining display from the percussionists. Following this were "Sabapathikku veru deivam", a Gopalakrishna Bharati composition in Abogi and "Tatva meruva tarama", a Thyagaraja composition in Garudadhwani. Mr. Ganesh chose a Mysore Vasudevachariar composition, "Bhajarere manasa" in Karnataka Devagandhari as the main piece. There was an elaborate alapana, kalpana swaras and a thani avarthanam from the percussionists at the end, which was very fast paced and highly entertaining.

Resuming after a short break, Mr. Ganesh sang "Kamakshi Amba", a swarajati in Bhairavi by Shyama Sastry. Then he played an excellent ragam-thanam-pallavi in mohanam. This was followed by crowd-pleasers like "Alaipayuthey" in Kaanada by Oothukkadu Venkata Subbier, "Krishna Nee Begane Baro" in Yaman Kalyani by Vyasaraya, "Kurai onrum illai", a ragamalika composed by Rajagopalachari. The concluding pieces of the concert included a Thiruppugazh in Behag, a Thillana in Bahudari that is the violinist's original composition, "Bhagyada Lakshmi Baaramma" in Madhyamavati by Purandara Dasa and a Mangalam. Overall, it was a captivating performance by all the artists, throughout the length of the concert, which lasted close to 4 hours!!


Copyright 2003 Indian Music Society of Minnesota