Dec 23, 2008

Review that appeared in Hindu this morning.

Clear diction, amazing precision

Their intelligence in fascinating the listeners were evident in Trichur Brothers’ recital.
ENTHUSIASTIC and SINCERE: Trichur Brothers
It is, indeed, gratifying to note that the younger artists of today are emerging into competent performers. Trichur Brothers, Srikrishna Mohan and Ramkumar Mohan, are on the wings to take off with several favourable aspects on their side like youth, strong vocal power coupled with clarity in delivery, pleasant stage presence and good foundation. The duo’s Tamizh Isai was well planned and accomplished. The ragas chosen, the compositions identified and the layout o f the programme proved their diligence and intelligence in fascinating the listener.
Sriranjani and ‘Gaja Vadana’ of Papanasam Sivan set the concert on the right note of spirit and speed. A notably Hindustani accented Hindolam alapana gave a relaxed feel that was followed by equally serene ‘Ma Ramanan’ (Sivan). Purvikalyani was launched on the upper registers which later encompassed the other regions in an enchanting way. Can there be a better option for them here than ‘Aananda Nadamaduvar’ by Neelakanta Sivan? The kalpanaswaras were bouncy with contributions from Usha Rajagopalan on the violin, Trichur Mohan on mridangam and D.V. Venkatasubramaniam on the ghatam. The raga expositions alternatively offered by Srikrishna and Ramkumar are always zealous. The output demonstrates their affection in complementing each other musically. The main piece Thodi was imposingly handled and here the choice once again went in favour of Sivan. ‘Karithikeya Kangeya’ and a comprehensive niraval which was developed at ‘Malmaruga Shanmuaga Muruga Guha.’ The swara sallies were dynamic and competitive. Passion packed Ritigowla in ‘Guruvayoor Appane’ (Ambujam Krishna), joyous Suddhasaveri through ‘Thaye Tripurasundari’ (Thooran), soft and lingering Devagandhari with ‘Enneramum’ (Gopalakrishana Bharati), piety Ragamalika viruttam followed by ‘Srichakra Raja’ were part of the package that concluded with the Hamsanandi tongue twisting Thiruppugazh. Usha Rajagopalan’s participation is encouraging and impeccable. Trichur Mohan kept a low profile but was fire and brimstone during thani with Venkatasubramaniam. (Link to the review)

Nov 23, 2008

As the curtain raises to usher the December Season

December 8th:

Sabha: Kalarasana
(Exclusive Tamil Songs)
Venue: Swamy's Hall
Time: 6.00 p.m.
Violin: Usha Rajagopal
Mridangam: Trichur R Mohan
Ghatam: Venkat

December 12th: Yuva Kala Bharathi title bestowed on us at 6.30 pm at the YGP auditorium

December 16th:
Sabha: SAFE
Venue: Sastri Hall
Time: 4.00 p.m.
Violin: Sanjeev
Mridangam: Trichur R Mohan
Ghatam: Venkat

December 17th:
Sabha: Sri Parthasarathy Swami Sabha

Time: 2.00 p.m.
Violin: Madurai Balasubramaniam
Mridangam: Trichur R Mohan
Ghatam: B. Subbarao

December 20th:
Sabha: Kapali Fine Arts

Venue: Sastri Hall
Time: 9.00 A.M.

Violin: M.A. Sundaresan
Mridangam: Trichur R Mohan
Ganjira: Anirudh Atreya

December 21st:
Sabha: BrahmaGanaSabha
Venue: Sivagami Petachi Auditorium
Time: 3.45 pm

Violin: M.A. Krishnaswamy
Mridangam: Trichur R Mohan
Ghatam: Uduppi Shreedhar

December 23rd:
Sabha: Nalinakanthi
Time: 6.30 p.m.
Mridangam: Trichur R Mohan
Will provide the rest of the details asap.

December 25th:
Sabha: GK Foundation
Time: 6.30 p.m.
Violin: Madurai Balasubramaniam
Mridangam: Trichur R Mohan
Ghatam: B. Subbarao

December 29th:
Sabha: Mylapore Fine Arts
Time: 3.00 p.m.
Violin: Rajasri
Mridangam: Trichur R Mohan
Ghatam: Venkat

December 30th:
Sabha: Thyagabrahma Gana Sabha
Venue: Vani Mahal
Time: 4.00 p.m.
Violin: Sivakumar
Mridangam: Trichur R Mohan
Ghatam: Trichy Murali

Nov 7, 2008

Concerts for November

November 8th,

PSBB Millenium School,
Time: 6.30pm

Violin: MA Krishnaswami
Mridangam: Trichur R Mohan
Ghatam: Venkat

November 15th,

Time: 6.30 pm

Ayyappa Temple, Anna Nagar (Sreekrishna Sweets Organised Only Tamil Concert)

Violin: Shertalai Sivakumar

Mridangam: Trichur R Mohan

Oct 17, 2008

Press clipping that appeared in the Hindu this morning

Excerpt from the article written by Jaya Narayanan in the Friday Review , Trivandrum Edition

Trichur Brothers, Sreekrishna and Ramkumar Mohan have become regulars at Navaratri concerts in Kerala.

Their hearty performance took off with Bhairavi varnam and ‘Mahaganapathe’(Gowla- Mishra Chapu-Dikshitar). The brothers chose Abhogi (Sabhapathi) as the second raga and delighted the audience with their musical sparring. ‘Gangeyavasana’(Hameerkalyani-Adi-SwathiTirunal) and ‘Ranganayakam’ (Nayaki-Adi-Dikshitar) were rare treats. An assortment of Ranjini, Janaranjini, Megharanjini and Sreeranjini came as a pleasant surprise.

Their main raga, Mohanam was a tribute to their maturity as well as sheer talent. The alapanam was full of promise and the delivery of the kriti did not disappoint. Even in the lower register, their singing was powerful and Sreekrishna rendered a brilliant burst of manodharma swaras. ‘Nanupalimpa,’ the well-known Tyagaraja composition was sung with devotion.

Complementing each other with perfect harmony, the brothers kept up the audience interest with alternate slow and fast-paced songs. Their father, Trichur Mohan played the mridangam, accompanied by Udupi Sridhar on the ghatam and Trikkakara Y.N. Santharam on the ganjira.

The promising youngster, Viju.S. Anand was the violinist.

Sep 26, 2008

Concert Schedule

October 1, 2008; Wednesday
Venue : Uttar Kamakshi Temple
City : Mumbai
Violin: Madurai Balasubramaniam
Mridangam: Trichur R Mohan
Ghatam: Shakthidharan

October 4, 2008; Saturday
City : Nedumbacheri, Kerala
Violin : Viju
Mridangam : Trichur R Mohan
Ganjira : Shantharam
Ghatam : Udupi Sridhar

October 5, 2008; Sunday
Venue : Shri Katyayini Amman Temple
City : Trichur
Time : 06-30 PM
Violin : Viju
Mridangam : Trichur R Mohan
Ganjira : Shantharam
Ghatam : Udupi Sridhar

October 7, Tuesday
Venue: Pullayar Koil, Srinagar Colony, Saidapet.
City: Chennai.
Time: 6.00 pm
Violin: M A Krishnaswamy
Mridangam: Trichur R Mohan
Ghatam: Venkat

October 8, 2008 ; Wednesday
Venue : Adambakkam
City : Chennai
Violin : Madurai Balu
Mridangam : Trichur R Mohan
Ghatam : D Venkatasubramaniam

October 12th; Saturday
Venue: Bharath Kalachar, Chennai
Time: 6.00 pm
Rest of the details asap.

Sep 15, 2008

A press clipping from Malayala Manorama Newspaper, that appeared on the 14th of September, 2008.

മനംകവര്‍ന്ന രാഗങ്ങളുമായി തൃശ്ശൂര്‍ സഹോദരന്മാര്‍

കോഴിക്കോട്‌: മികച്ച ആലാപനശൈലിയാല്‍ കൃതികളുടെ ഈണത്തെയും സാഹിത്യത്തെയും സമ്പന്നമാക്കിക്കൊണ്ട്‌, തൃശ്ശൂര്‍ സഹോദരന്മാരായ കൃഷ്‌ണമോഹന്‍, രാംകുമാര്‍മോഹന്‍ എന്നിവര്‍ ചേര്‍ന്ന്‌ തളി ജയ ഓഡിറ്റോറിയത്തില്‍ അവതരിപ്പിച്ച സംഗീതക്കച്ചേരി ശ്രോതാക്കളുടെ മനംകവര്‍ന്നു. ശങ്കരാഭരണരാഗത്തിന്റെ പ്രയോഗശൈലി തികച്ചും രൂപപ്പെടുത്തിക്കൊണ്ടായിരുന്നു മുഖ്യമായും ഇവര്‍ 'എന്തുകുപെദല' എന്ന ത്യാഗരാജകൃതി ആലപിച്ചത്‌. ഇതില്‍ നിരവലിലെ, മര്‍മപ്രധാന ഭാവങ്ങളും സ്വരസഞ്ചാരങ്ങളുമെല്ലാം സംഗീതപ്രിയര്‍ക്ക്‌ പുതിയൊരനുഭവമായി. നാട്ടക്കുറിഞ്ചിയിലെ, 'ചലമേല' എന്ന വര്‍ണത്തോടെയാണ്‌ പരിപാടിയാരംഭിച്ചത്‌. ഹംസനാദത്തിലെ ത്യാഗരാജകൃതിയായ 'ബണ്ടുരീതികോലു' (ആദി) സാമരാഗത്തിലെ ദീക്ഷിതരുടെ 'അന്നപൂര്‍ണേ വിശാലാക്ഷി' (ആദി) തുടങ്ങിയ കൃതികളുടെ ആലാപനവും ഭാവലയമുള്ളവയായിരുന്നു. ഗാനത്തിന്റെ മര്‍മസ്ഥാനമറിഞ്ഞ്‌ മൃദംഗത്തില്‍ വാദനമൊരുക്കിയ തൃശ്ശൂര്‍ മോഹനും ഘടത്തില്‍ ഗോപിനാഥപ്രഭുവും ചേര്‍ന്നവതരിപ്പിച്ച തനിയാവര്‍ത്തനവും ശ്രദ്ധേയമായി. പക്കാലാ രാമദാസായിരുന്നു വയലിന്‍ വാദകന്‍.

Aug 28, 2008

When Semmangudi mama stayed at our place.......

Hi ,
It’s quite some time since I wrote anything. It is imperative that one keeps going once they start on something. Have kept postponing my post for such a long time now that the only thing that regularly appears on our blog seems to be our concert schedules.

Last month saw various events happening all across the country to celebrate the centenary of Shri Semmangudi Mama, the Pitamaha of Carnatic Music. Even though this is a bit late, I thought it would still be a good idea to share some of our experiences with Semmangudi mama with all of you. You must be made aware that Mama generally stayed with us whenever he toured Trichur for his concerts. He was a great friend of our Grand Dad, Shri T.B. Ramachandra Iyer and our dad also frequently accompanied him on the Mridangam.

Semmangudi mama was very strict about his routine. He would do all his Anushtanas and only then have even a cup of coffee. During one occasion he was coming to Trichur from Mumbai and his train was quite late. He reached our house well past 12 noon and in spite of incessant requests from the entire family, refused to have anything to satiate his hunger until he was finished with all his Anushtanas. Just to give you an idea about how disciplined he was regarding his Anushtanas.

I must tell you in advance that my brother and I were only in our school going days when this incident that I am going to relate happened. Me in my 3 rd grade, my brother doing his first grade, if my memory is fault less. It was a Sunday, and our entire gang of cousins and friends in the Gramam (village) had arrived for a game of cricket. We never play the game in silence and no sooner than the first ball being delivered, the habitual noise and pandemonium created by this game was gaining in its momentum. Nobody was aware of the decibel levels achieved by their respective vocal chords once they were into the thick of the action. There were guys shouting for so many different reasons. Some of us were cheering our team, some were fighting over the rules and decisions, some voiced their valuable comments about the foot work and bowling action, of which they had no clue, (Definitely an impact of television commentary), some shouting merely for the sake of it, and over and above all this the thundering voice of my Grand ma, who somehow found her way into the scheme of things by incessantly commenting quite loudly about what a big waste of time and energy it was and nevertheless watched every bit of the action attentively. There was also our uncle who was just waiting for one of us to hit the ball at the glass windows or garden, so that the match can be abandoned with immediate effect. Okay, this will give an idea about how electrified the situation was.

Our dear Semmangudi Mama, in the meantime was taking his afternoon nap. He was also under going some Ayurvedic treatment and had to get some good rest. He also had a couple of concerts coming up.

A mind that is tuned to our system of music can indeed have very sensitive ears, I must say. No wonder, that mama was disturbed from his sleep the moment we started playing. And the noise that followed would have created near panic in his heart. As we were playing, we suddenly heard a soft voice from the Balcony above the space where we played. “All of you please go to your houses and take rest. Please do not disturb.” We were used to such comments from our grand mother, but were surprised to hear a different voice express the sentiment. Nobody replied, but the game came to a stand still. Many of us were not even old enough to appreciate the gravity of the situation. For us, then, Semmangudi mama was just another person and he also behaved like a normal person with all of us. Already we were playing against so many odds and protests, and we were like, “just when everything looked okay, who is trying to stop us now”. Anyways finally my brother found courage to reply. “Mama today is Sunday, it is our day, we cannot be quiet, and if you want you can go and sleep in some other room”. Hearing this Mama burst into laughter and asked us to continue to play. For so many years he would recount this day and have a hearty laugh. Years later when we started appreciating the intricacies of Carnatic Music and the contribution of Semmangudi mama to this art form, we can only laugh at our childishness. But of course we were only children then. Belated Centenary Wishes, Semmangudi mama.

Musically yours,
Trichur Brothers

I must thank our parents for refreshing my memory about this incident.

Jun 16, 2008


Dear Friends,
Yesterday, I received this wonderful mail from my dear Nalini Miss. To receive a mail from her itself was a pleasant surprise but what it held in store was even better. She is the founder principal of one of the most well established schools in Kerala; "Harisri Vidya Nidhi", where Ram and I did our entire schooling. That we have already read this mail more than hundred times is ample testimony as to how much we appreciate and treasure it. Nalini Miss, thanks a lot for this rare gift. We are really touched that you took the effort to pen it down and mail it across in spite of your hectic schedule. You are one of those rare teachers who don't consider their job done once the student is out of school. Thanks for being what you are, Nalini Miss.
Musically yours,
Srikrishna ( For Trichur Brothers)

There are moments in life when you feel that you must have done something good in your childhood, or when you were growing up. When you were busy being a teacher and a guru to your students, trying to wheedle the best out of them, striving to gain a hold of their hearts unwittingly, coaxing magic out of pliable dough to create a living masterpiece! Later, you sit back and recall the best and the most spirited of your creations, and the ones that have caused you the maximum problems, and your heart goes out in appreciation to them for having brought out the best in you. Isn't that what teaching is all about?
I had finished lunch and was about to go upstairs for my siesta when the front bell rang. A little disgruntled, I went to open the door. There stood two of my erstwhile students, Srikrishna and Ram Kumar along with the former's brand new bride. They had been married a month ago and they stood beaming at me with such enthusiasm that it warmed the cockles of my heart. "Nalini Miss, sorry for having come at a wrong time", said Srikrishna, as they walked in.
Preliminary chatter over, the young girl suddenly turned to me and said, "Nalini Miss, I have come to thank you!" Before I had time to react, she launched into a sweet little
incident. "Srikrishna and I had a chance to talk to each other over the phone even before we met . As I listened to him speak, I could not resist asking him where he had done his schooling. It was just that I was mesmerized by the way he spoke English and that was the first thing that attracted me towards him." She smiled at me, as she carried on. "It was then he told me that his fluency in the language was all due to his beloved Nalini Miss!"
My mind went back to those days when Srikrishna had been a sensitive little touch-me-not, highly sensitive and introverted. He had always been a fabulous singer, but I recollected the times I had to urge him to get involved in the school choir and participate in part singing in particular.. He was a difficult child to handle, but extremely loveable. Though he was very often in awe of me, yet gradually he opened up and became so responsive that his parents were amazed at the transformation in him.
On the other other hand, his younger brother, again a singer in the making in school, was just the opposite. He had the gift of the gab, knew exactly how to make the teachers (including me) dance to his tunes, and could invariably get away with blue murder . Oh yes, he was (and still is) a charming boy.

Known as the Trichur Brothers the two have blossomed out in the field of Carnatic music and have created a niche for themselves as regular performers at various kutcheris, both in Thrissur and Chennai. As up-coming artistes they have been much praised and written about for their sheer skill and versatility. As the afternoon wore away, we carried on talking about music and life, and time itself seemed to wait with bated breath for us, as we laughed and joked about how they had begun to experiment with "part singing" in Carnatic music "just the way we used to do in school."
Now they sat in front of me with one request. "Nalini Miss, before we leave your house today, we want to sing for you, may we?" They sat cross-legged on my divan with perfect ease, closed their eyes and launched into a Dikshitar kirtan……. a heavenly rendering on the love between Radha and Krishna. As the music unfolded, I listened to it in rapt silence. There was no harmonium or shruthi box but the notes rose and fell, in perfect harmony as my heart filled with pride and ecstasy. They followed this up with the beautiful composition , 'Maathe', and the emotions seemed to flow straight from their hearts into mine. For a glorious hour and a half the two boys sang as though enchanted and I sat there mesmerized , not feeling the minutes go by. .
At the end of the impromptu performance, while I sat spellbound , one of them said softly, "We have sung at so many kutcheris over the years with accompaniments and to huge audiences. But today we have sung from our hearts …..undoubtedly our best performance to date!"
When they rose to leave, I felt as though I had been part of an almost mystical experience. It had been such a delightful couple of hours and I knew that I would retain this day high in my cache of memories, to be kept and treasured beyond time. For the umpteenth time in my life, I sent up a silent prayer, "Dear Lord, thank you for these beautiful moments! Thank you for having made me a teacher!"
Nalini Chandran

Feb 7, 2008

February Concerts

February 17th:

Chamber Concert,

Sathsangham Hall ; Ambattur

Violin: MA Sundaresan

Mridangam: Trichur R Mohan

Ghatam: Venkat

February 24th;

Sivarathri Series;

Odukkathur Mutt, Banglore;

Time: 6.00-9.00

Violin: MA Sundaresan

Mridangam: Trichur R Mohan

Ghatam: Trichy Murali

Jan 7, 2008

January 2008 schedule:

Jan 10th:
Venue: Ayodhya Mandapam, West Mambalam
Time: 7.00-10.00pm
Violin: Madurai Balasubramaniam
Mridangam: Trichur R Mohan
Ganjira: Anirudh Atreya

Jan 15th
Venue: Brahmana Sabha, Trichur
Violin: Edapalli Ajith Kumar
Mridangam: Trichur R Mohan
Ghatam: Uduppi Shreedhar

Jan 19:
Chamber Concert ; Kottivakkam
Details asap

Jan 27th:
Exclusive Tamil Krithi Concert at MFAC, Chennai
Violin: Sanjeev
Mridangam: Trichur R Mohan
Ghatam: Venkat

Jan 29th:
Venue: Asthika Samaj, Venus colony
Time: 6.30pm
Violin: M R Gopinath
Mridangam: Tricur R Mohan
Ghatam: Venkat.