4 Apr 2016: Swara Rangawali A medley of melodies

Singapore, 27 Mar 2016:

“Swara Rangawali,” an outstanding musical rendition composed & directed by Didi Kalyani Puranik, daughter of Pandit Balakrishnabuwa Kapileshwari maestro of the Kirana Gharana and performed by the students of The Temple of Fine Arts (TFA), was held on Sunday, the 27th March, 2016 at the Esplanade Concourse, Singapore, as part of Esplanade’s “Holi - Colours of Spring” programme, to commemorate this popular Indian festival of colours and gaiety.

Inspired by HH Swami Shantanand Saraswathi, The Temple of Fine Arts blossomed in 1981, in the South East Asian region, with modest beginnings in 1982 at Singapore. It was established as a unique endeavour to enrich mankind through the arts, not in a religious sense as the name suggests, but rather as a place where art is nourished and revered as divine. To this objective, TFA is relentless in its efforts to promote art and culture not only in Singapore but all over the world through its centres located at Kuala Lumpur, Penang, Johor Bahru, Malacca, Perth, Colombo, Coimbatore, Chennai and New Jersey.

TFA has been hosting public performances to cover a wide genre encapsulating classical, semi-classical, folk and contemporary dance forms and music in leading art venues in Singapore. Adapting non-Indian themes in performances has also enabled TFA to reach out to the vast majority of the cosmopolitan Singapore public, whist reinforcing and nurturing strong foundations in Indian culture of music and dance.

The gala event to celebrate Holi is performed by the students of TFA, every year with renewed vigour, under the able guidance of Didi Kalyani Puranik, who has devoted her entire life for promoting and teaching music. True to the guiding spirit and motto of TFA – Art, Just for the love of it – this event is open to the public at no charge.

Holi, being one of the most popular festivals in the northern parts of India, is typically celebrated with unabashed smearing of colours on one another, songs and dances. In places associated with the birth and childhood of Lord Krishna such as Mathura, Vrindavan, Barsana and Nandgaon, one never fails to hear the beat of pakhavaj, a traditional percussion instrument, in street corners amidst merriment of music, dance, colours and delicacies. This infectious fervour has passed on over generations and has caught up amongst the Indian diaspora throughout the world.

“Swara Rangawali,” brilliantly captured the essence of Holi by this musical extravaganza wherein the Swars, Taal and Raag were finely combined and sprayed on the enthralled audience, in the traditional styles of Hori, Tumri, Phaag, Tappa/Dhamaal, Chaiti and Rasiya along with Rabindra Sangeeth from Bengal and folk music from Maharashtra, Gujarat and Rajasthan. A delightful Sufi rendition of Ghulam Mustafa Qadri sung by the great artist, Abida Parveen was also performed by the students. The percussionists added their wonderful touch to the show.

The musical medley comprising a portion of Madhurashtakam in Raag Des after the invocation of Lord Ganesha, and the various Raagas such as Sohni, Basant, Jhinjhoti, Khamaaj, Kaafi, Kirwani, Miya Malhar, Bhairav and the unique Pancham se Gara reflects the amazing talent of the students and the intense training provided by the faculty of TFA.

It was an enchanting performance that inspired several people to walk in and enjoy the melodies, as the evening progressed.

Report by: Revathi Raj Iyer, chirminey@gmail.com, with inputs from the Temple of Fine Arts, Singapore: http://www.tfasg.org

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