It was ‘Duet’, the film which pitchforked saxophone player Kadri Gopalnath into the limelight in Tamil Nadu, and Kadri had a unique duet with Ronu Majumdar, the well-known flautist, in a jugalbandhi.
It was a surprisingly large audience which had gathered to hear the duo perform atKamarajar Arangam for Chennayil Thiruvaiyaru on December 22, and they were not disappointed.
At the outset, Kadri said the jugalbandhi was a blend of north and south, Carnatic and Hindustani music and they had tried to pick the right ragas which were common to both forms of music.
The concert began with ‘Vatapi Ganapathim’ in traditional Carnatic fashion in Hamsadhwani. Very soon the audience were treated to a lovely flute accompanied by the majestic sax. The brilliance of the sax, intertwined with the melody of the reed, was a heady mix for the audience which repeatedly applauded the duo.
The recital, which lasted beyond half-an-hour, brought forth the nuances of the raga in good measure.
Kadri sustained the tempo very well and the long sustained notes of the sax were a treat to hear.
Hamsadhwani was followed by Hamsanandhi and the second Hamsa was no poor cousin to the first.
The evening air permeated with the rustic whistling of the flute. The amalgam of sax and flute accompanied brilliantly by Harikumar on the mridangam tabla and morsing was vintage stuff.
The pravaham of music in the form of the instruments was flowing like a perennial river and the audience were taking a happy dip. The main piece was in the Carnatic raga Gowri Manohari which is akin to the Hindustani Padudheep.
Gopalnath and Ronu Majumdar essayed the raga with all its dimensions in an emphatic manner which was followed by the good orchestration of tani.
It is significant to note that the sax specialist from Karnataka and the flute maestro from West Bengal combined to give an enthralling performance in Chennai, the Mecca of Music.