The grand finale of the annual Hindustani music festival was on a chilly evening
that in no time warmed up with luminaries of vocal music performing, and numerous
music lovers flooding in to the 'well'. The noted Pritam Bhattacharjee rendered
a repertoire of deep-throated base melodies. The ragas rose to spirituality and
wove the classic compositions into emotive matrices.
The Sitar player Pratik Chowdury's performance that followed was in contrast, with its streaming music of strings. These traditional classical ragas with waves like stretches, movements and ups and downs -'mandra sthai' and 'tara sthai' - in all their intricate symmetric patterns, seemed delightfully charming and contemporary.
Tripti Mukherjee's vocal recital that followed also had those peak extends and a poignancy. And for fans of Anup Jalota, he appeared at the arched stage almost like a frenzied devotee - and festoons of bhajans flowed, with the audience swinging to the revered tunes. Along with a host of co-performers like Kedar Pundit, Vijay Ghate, Nitin Mitta, Surendra Bharathi and Mukund Petkar, he rendered a number of bhajans. Many verses by Meerabai, Tulasi Das, Kabir and Surdas were recapitulated, while the essence of it all remained the 'Bhakthi' aspect and the philosophy of life, often referring to the preaching of Krishna.