Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Sri T R Mahalingam - Flute

Sri T R Mahalingam, a muiscal Genius

(Yours sincerely with Mali Sir) 

I was fortunate to know Sri Mahalingam personally and shared my moments with him in some places.
I will not make any personal comments here, but bring a few words from a book “Carnatic Summer” written by Sriram. V, a well known writer in music circles.

I have my own reservations about the way he has written about various people in the book.
However, his comments are not to be brushed aside.

This is what he wrote in the beginning of the article on Mali Sir.

When Semmangudi srinivasa Iyer was asked to list the great geniuses of Carnatic music, he thought of only three names – ‘Flute’ Mali, T N Rajarathinam Pillai and Palghat Mani Iyer. That Mali or T R Mahalingam, though the youngest of the three had come first to the mind of the grand sire of music spoke eloquently of his unquestioned virtuosity on the flute. He was, in many ways, the flute equivalent of Rajarathinam Pillai on the nagaswaram. When Mali was in the mood, he played some of the finest melodies on his flute, enchanting his listeners and taking them on the path to musical nirvana. He did not just please his listeners; he would also move their hearts.

This recording being presented here is unusual. There is no Violin accompaniment.
Knowledgeable people should tell whether there was a concert without Violin, or this is a special recording. I got this recording from the collection of my good friend Late N S Srinivasan, a disciple of Mali sir.
There is only one item in the hour long recording.
Details are as under.
01 Shankarabharanam Alapana 1
02 Shankarabharanam Alapana 2
03 Eduta Nilachite – Shankarabharanam
04 Tani
I hope I am correct in identifying the Kriti.

I request rasikas to give some feedback on the post.
I am not looking at thanking notes, please.


vigi said...

Just this afternoon I was talking to a friend who had witnessed what was possibly Mali's last concert, at BARC, Mumbai.For a concert to start at 8pm in a full house, he apparently came in at 9:15. When berated for being so callous about making people wait, he is supposed to have responded that the people are still waiting because they expect to hear some good music. They will get it. And when he finished at 11:15, not a single person had moved. Such was their rapt attention. And then they went into a spontaneous standing ovation. The organiser had to accept that it was trully devaganam that night. He died the next week.

I am saving this picture. It is startling to see Maali enjoy a smoke, as he enjoys his drink, particularly since as a flautist i would think he will need strong lungs. These great artists have the power to reduce us to tears of joy with their music. But they are also mortal. IMHO We should not be quick to pass judgement based on their frailities. If we love their music we must also love the person completely, with all their weakness. Lets focus on their gift to us. That is wht lives on. That is their legacy.
Tx for sharing. Its is on the efforts of those like you that I take baby steps in learning and appreciating this mahasagaram of carnatic music. Tx again.

uma said...