This is to share my happy moments of
watching Jaya-TV’s unique programme “Raagamaalika”,
7-Dec-2003, Sunday. No wonder, it was special to me as our beloved
and respected Smt. P.Susheela was one of the judges for the Finals
in the competition series. It was also the 25th episode. The other
judge was Shri. TL. Maharajan (TLM), who gave a splendid support
to PS throughout the programme :-)
Vijay Adhiraaj (VA), a handsome personality, was the conductor
of the programme directed by the eminent Subhashree Thanikachalam.
The male participants were Vidyashankar, Srijith and Haricharan,
whereas the female competition was among Chaindhavi, Ranjani and
Bhavya. It is to be noted that Haricharan was adjudged the best
male singer in Apoorva Raagangal, conducted by Vijay TV earlier,
by the same judge PS :-)
VA, as part of introduction of PS said…..“She is a
living legend; we are proud to have born and live during her days;
it is our bhagyam to have her to judge the competitors; it is a
pride for all participants and orchestra…; we can continue
with a lot more in praise of her; but due to time crunch, without
spending more time… let me invite PS”.
PS reciprocated VA' accolades and expressed her happiness to be
a judge for the Finals. He said she had seen all the previous episodes
and liked the richness of the programme. She also said carnatic
sangeetham is being importance in Raagamaalika, which is getting
suppressed in the current scenario of music.
VA requested PS to inaugurate the episode with her song. I just
waited for the song…I was quite pleased to listen to the charanam
of “naane varuven ingum angum” from “Yaar nee”.
Those were the lines including “en paadhai unakku ragasiyamaa?
en paadal unakku adhisayamaa?”. Take-off was fine….
Oh…that pallavi and the stretchy “yaarendru yaar arivaar….” was
great and amazing. How she managed the ageing constraint and given
proper pauses to give a perfect finish :-)
VA introduced the next judge TLM describing him as all-in-all (not
only a singer) giving due respect to TLM’s father Shri. Tiruchi
It was a different attempt by Subhashree. She penned two different
songs. A melody for boys starting with “en aasai pookal” and
a folk type for girls beginning “Ora vazhi paadhaiyile naan
oththayila pogayile”. It was music’d by Satya (deserves
applause), who is the keyboard player in Raagamaalika. The same
song sung by all participants in the respective group, was recorded
in a theatre earlier to this episode.
Few lines of each participant were telecasted wherein he/she shared
their experience on ‘recording’ in a theatre. Judges
were asked to listen to the original recording of the songs, it
As part of the competition, the competitors repeated the song.
Based on the original and the ‘live’ singing capacity
of them, PS and TLM gave their feedback. PS stressed that expression
is the key factor of a song, besides praising their voices. TLM
seconded saying “without bhaavam, it will become Paavam” :-)
It my opinion, Subhashree must have taken a lot of effort and energy
only for this Round-1. It was fabulous :-)
As usual, the singers to sing a song on their own choice. It was
great that the girls chose PS songs. I was disappointed that none
of boys went for songs of TL & his heirs :-(
= Vidhyashankar gave a marvelous start for “Kannan vandhaan
ange kannan vandhaan” (Film: Ramu; sung by SG and TMS).
= Bhavya was impressive in her “en uyir thozhi keloru sedhi” (Film:
Karnan). While the great humming after “ariyanai arivan” was
on, I could see PS in the background enjoying the same singing by
herself :-) TLM asked Bhavya “do you know the original singer
of the song?” and said her voice has still the tenderness;
it will be very good if it is matured; however he did not miss to
appreciate her talent to sing this difficult song in front of the
original singer PS
= Haricharan was complete in his “senthamizh then mozhiyaal” (Film:
Maalayitta manghai; sung by TR Mahalingam)
= Ranjani could satisfy the judges with her “Chittu kuruvikkenna
kattupaadu”. VA recollected that this song fetched the best
playback singer award for PS at national level; TRM asked Ranjani
to repeat the last line of the pallavi and corrected the sangathis.
PS repeated the same “kattupaadu kattupaaduuuuuu oh ho oooooooh” :-)
= Srijith sang KJY’s “eri kara(i) poonkaatre” from “thooral
= Chaindhavi was just fine with her “unnai ondru ketpean” from “Pudhiya
The first part of the Finals came to an end. It was with a lovely
song “Aarodum mannil ingum neerodum” (Film: Pazhani),
sung by all 3 male participants. VA said it was unusual that TMS,
SG and PBS sang this together. Ture…. But VA added that it
was the only song sung by them together. This was incorrect… this
trio had given gems like “devan vandhann devan vandhaan kuzhandhai
vadivile” (Kuzhandhaikaaga), “Aayiram karangal neetti” (“Karnan”;
Tiruchi Lokanathan was the 4th singer). There may be some more :-)
The second and concluding part of the episode will be next week,
as shown in the title cards.
On 14-Dec-2003, Sunday, Part 2 of Finals of Raagamaalika began
with a smiley welcome by VA. A few clippings/excerpts from Part-1
VA requested PS to start the Part-2 also with her mellifluous voice.
PS rendered a few lines of “Manadhile oru paattu; mazhai varum
adhai kEttu” from the film Dhayam onnu. VA said “neenga
paadina ovvoru paattum ovvoru gem; kaalathaal azhiyaadhavai; enga
manadhile eppavam irukkum”.
PS recalled her music directors IR, MSV, TKR, GR and other great
gurus and acknowledged them saying “adhu oru POR KAALAM; all
MDs came out with lovely music, but it finally became sushelamma
paatu…; ivanga music-la paada naan thaan kuduthu vachirukkanam” :-)
Then TL Maharajan started saying “all the boys were given
opportunity to sing a song sung by the great TMS, SG and PBS; now
it would be fair to call the girls also to sing a song”. TLM
suggested that they could sing the song sung by the 3 melody queens
of yester-year Susheela-amma, LR Eshwari-Athai and Soolmangalam
Rajalakshmi-Akka :-)))). He asked the girls to name the song. Yes,
it was “Aani muthu vaangi vandhen”, a lovely melody
from “Bhama vijayam”. Ranjani was for PS, Chaindhavi
for LRE and Bhavya for SR. It was so pleasing and sweet when these
3 young girls rendered. I liked very much the humming after the
charanam. So charming :-)
Then the Round-3 started. It was a duet among the participants.
# Haricharan and Ranjani paired for the classic duet “maasila
nilave nam” from Ambhkapathi. Their job was neat. TLM said
that this was sung by TMS and the lady titled Ashtavadhaani (P.Bhanumathi).
He gave a good chit for the participants
# Vidhyashankar and Chaindhavi went for “kannan oru kai kuzhandhai” from
Bhadrakaali. VS was at ease to almost replicate KJY but Chaindhavi
was finding it stressful at the start. TLM came out with the same
as part of his feedback. He also said that the words were not properly
pronounced or so ???
# Srijith and Bhavya chose the matchless duet “naalaam naalaam
thiru naalaam” from Kaadhalikka neramillai. Srijith was also
almost reflecting PBS in his style of rendering. Both of them were
in good sync during the beautiful humming after charanam. PS praised
them with “nalla irukku; sangathi ellam nalla vandhadhu”
Round-4 was simply great with a powerful show by TLM. Each participant
chose (or given) a Raagam. One of the judges will lead the participant
with the relevant swaras of the Raagam. The participant should try
their best to follow. Then a song (Private or devotional) was sung
by the participant in the shade of the Raagam.
# Vidyashankar with Pandhuvaraali. When VS did face difficulty
at ucha sthayi, TLM said “mela panchamum poganum; control-um
pannanum”. VS sang “ninnarul iyam ambalam…”.
TLM did advised VS to improve the pallavi to make it better
# Bhavya with Sindhu Bhairavi. TLM said this Raagam was used in
many songs (devotional as well as films). He stated that he had
given more than 300 song in this raagam under the music-direction
of TR Pappa and others. Bhavya did very well following TLM, with
TLM adopting a different shruthi to make Bhavya at ease :-)
# Srijith with Malaya maarudham. On the swaras and the Thiyagaraja
keethanai (anyone remember the starting lines?), he was brilliant.
TLM showed his capacity of singing MM with or without Rishabham.
Wonderful TLM :-)
# Ranjani with Shanmuga priya. TLM said “Amma (PS) sang a
fantastic song in this raagam” and asked Ranjani “do
you know?”. It was none other than “maraindhirundhu
paarkkum marmam enna”. TLM rendered a few lines. Hey I missed
to record this programme. Salaam to TLM, a multi faceted personality
(wealth of knowledge on music, good speaking skills besides “ganneer” singing
in thooya thamizh). TLM clearly pointed out that Ranjani was not
correct in her pallavi (prayogam of the raagam).
I thought for a while… “enna idhu PS-ai chumma ukkaara
vachttangale”. Yes, I got the result.. The next lead was given
by PS :-)
Haricharan with Hindolam. PS showed her matured capacity in leading
HC. She was real classic in that. I recollected my grandma and mother
who are every good at Hindolam. Became bit emotional too. PS never
failed to point HC when he failed to touch Shatjamam. But his “maname
dhiname” (Paapanasam sivan’s composition) was great.
Chaindhavi with Mohanam. PS’s one of the favorite raagams.
It was with simple swarasm, as said by PS; she also said that we
could even make a full fledged katcheri using the swarams of mohanam
:-) Chaindhavi sang a few lines “swagathm Krishna”,
which received a friendly advice from PS “nalla voice open
Then the results.. No surprise… It was announced by TLM with
a get-go from PS.
2. Haricharan (TLM said he is good in classical)
3. Srijith (he received Vazhthukkal)
The END was also great. VA thanked PS and TLM for their time and
judgement. He also requested that both the judges should sing the
duet from Nayakan. Real treat to listen “Andhi mazhai megam”,
a fast thaalam poda vaikkum song.
I conclude this write-up saying “I not only enjoyed but would
like to participate in such matured competitions”.