The world cup final vs. The Alliance Francois concert.

In the Telugu movie Patala Bhairavi, Relangi, the suave comedian ofTollywood’s yester years, plays the role of the Queen’s brother, who falls in love with the Queen’s daughter, ( No incest implied here, marriage with your sister’s daughter is customarily permitted in these parts of India.). She spurns him in favor of the handsome young gardener. ( Beautifuul maidens seem to prefer gardeners. See Patala Bhairavi or Lady Chatterly’s lover for corraboration.), Relangi is inconsolable. He wants to commit suicide and explores the pros and cons of various means to the end ( Pun, intended, mind you.). At last he decides on hanging. He gets hold of a rope and goes to the woods to implement his decision. He ties the rope to a branch strong enough to hold
his weight, knots a noose at the other end, and boldly puts his neck, into it.
He is disgusted. He says,” No problem at all in dying, but one wishes that at least the rope is somewhat smoother.” Gallows humour, Relangi version, for you.
Yester day.
The finals of the world cup one day cricket, are scheduled to take place at Mubai, between the finalists, India and Sri Lanka, both favourites to lift the cup, in their respective countries. Everyone is apprehensive of the outcome. Both are stalwarts. The presidents of the two countries choose to witness the finals together. Prayers are being conducted in the two countries to ensure that the respective country wins. Lata Mangeshkar prays to God that Sachin slams a century and the team wins.No body
wants to miss the oppurtunity to witness the struggle between the titans at least on
the idiot box. I also decide not to skip it.
I open the news paper. In the engagements coloumn, there is mention of a concert of
Prince Rama Varma organised by the Alliance Francois today evening. I am in a quandary faced with a choice akin to the choice between Norma Shearer and Kanchana Mala. I postpone the painful decision. I go all the way to AF and get the passes for me and Mrs. The girl who issues the passes knows that the world cup final clashes with he concert. She admonishes me to use the passes and attend the concert and not to waste them.
I witness the Sri Lanka innings on the telly and then rush to the Greenpark to attend the concert. The Sri Lanka team scores 270 runs, not something to be scoffed at, but
then not an unbeatable one at that.if only Indian team pulls their act together, hopefully.
I reach the venue of the concert. I go to the paved yard surrounded by the big hotel building on three sides. I come across a few familiar faces, who frequent similar concerts. I zero in on one and start a conversation. I also look around. Lo, there is the legendary Bala Murali Krishna, evidently here, to listen to his accomplished protege sing in his presence. People are paying their obeaisance to him. I go to him offer my namasthe to him . He reciprocates and smiles profusely. Soon others swarm
around him.
Soon the concert is underway. The concert is quite short. Rama Varma says his Guru is scheduled to perform tomorrow at some other venus, and graciously preponed his visit by a day in order to be able to witness his sishya perform.The first song is an invocation to Lord Ganesha in the Hamsadhwani raga, not the usual Vataapi Ganapathim by Sri Dikshitar, but by some composer from Kerala, i do not seem to have heard of. But it is nice and fine for a start.Then there is a kriti by Dikshitar in the raga Dwijawanthi, . This raga is a of North Indian origin, but adopted by Dikshitar. Dikshitar’s early training in the north and the fact that he was a great veena exponent had imparted a distinctiveness to his compositions. Dikshitar’s krithis
are like carefully crafted gems, multilayered in their intellectual content. Then Sri Rama Varma goes on to a composition of Tyagaraja in the raga, Suposhini, not a profound one, but racy. One felt, he could have chosen a more profound one, out of thousands of the great kritis of the saint.Then there is a innovative composition authored by Sri Bala Murali Krishna, in Lavangi, an unusual raga created by him containing only four notes. The song is fine,but I for one , feel that. a raga with only four notes has only a limited scope.The carnatic music part of the concert is concluded with a flourish by Sri Varma , with the great and racy Tillana in Kadana Kutuhalam of again of his guru.
Rama Varma loves his guru, he doesn’t leave a chance to sing praise of his guru at
every possible occassion. And he has his guru in the audience today. He says his guru is of a calibre equalling that of the composers of yore like Tyagaraja. He says he would have spoken at more length, but his guru is in the audience.
The concert is closed after Sri Rama Varma sings a few songs in French,which he says he learnt when he was in his early twenties and which he unabashedly says are naughty. He says one can hear one of the compositions sung by none other tha the French president’s spouse.We do not get the import. I blame myself for not implementing my decade old resolution to learnFrench.
Overall, i felt,the concert fell much short of fullfilling the high hopes it generated in me.I do not know how others have felt.
No sooner than the concert is over, I rush back home. The world cup match is still on. The indians are in a strong position with seven wickets in hand, but they have a long way to go, and cricket as every one knows is unpredictable especially when the twoteams are equally poised.
But soon enough the Indian captain, the one and only Dhoni, in great style blasts a
six to claim the cup back after more than two decades.
A fullfilling evening, for me, overall.

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About versa kay

Agile, keen, versatile,considerate,patient
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2 Responses to The world cup final vs. The Alliance Francois concert.

  1. Hahaaaa! I watched the match too! And witness you all lifting the WC trophy! 😀 CONGRATS! 🙂

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