A Memorable Evening

Srinivas Reddy (sitar) and Ajit Acharaya (tabla) returned to Blackstone Field on Saturday, June 29, for another memorable evening of Classical Indian Music. The ragas they performed were Raga Gawoti and Raga Pilu

Srinivas, who is also a distinguished scholar, kindly provided us with information on the music:
“Raga Gawoti is a rare and beautiful raga. A more detailed description comes from the liner notes to Pandit Nikhil Banerjee’s 1984 recording of Raga Gawoti Live in Amsterdam with Abhijit Banerjee on tabla.

“Gawoti is equated with Bhim by many scholars, although this has become a matter of some controversy. Gawoti has the same arohi and avarohi (ascending and descending movements) as Bhim, but consistently uses the phrases n S’ D P and G m R n. S, which Bhim doesn’t. Bhim on the other hand, often uses the phrases m P G R S and m P G m G R S, distinguishing it from Gawoti. Both raags recall their kinship with Bhimpalasi through the use of komal gandhar in the upper octave in the phrase S’ g’ R’ S’. Unlike Bhimpalasi, however, the R and Dha are more prominent and the madhyam is weaker and used in a vakra fashion.”

Raga Pilu is light classical raga performed in a more playful fashion with musical elements from other ragas and folk melodies. In this rendition we incorporated the Indian patriotic song Sare Jahan Se Accha and J. S. Bach’s Contrapunctus No. 1 from the Art of the Fugue.

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