It has always been said from times immemorial that without the consent of heart and mind….no matter how perfectly the art is performed…..something called internal satisfaction will be missing…..and it doesn’t appeal to the audience. By saying perfectly I mean….the rules and the way in which it is supposed to be performed. Singing, Dancing, Writing, Painting, Sculpture…..all these need something more than practicing to get to the best! That best lies in the importance of realizing the real worth of the art learnt. This is really the vital point because by performing with the involvement of heart and mind……the result is something eternal in all the aspects……whether it is satisfaction, or justice done to it!
But what does all this have to do in this post? It is because the song which I am going to talk about now is very much related to a situation like this. This song “Andhela Ravilidhi” from the movie Swarna Kamalam can be called as the song of realization because it makes the main character Meenakshi (Bhanupriya) realize the importance of dance……in short…..her transformation from a person who never really gets involved in performing to heart’s consent…..to a person who has reached heights in the realization of the real worth of dancing with heart and mind!!
This song is considered as the heart of this movie…..though all the song are brilliant……this song has got something very special which made me discuss about it today!!
The movie is based on Meenakshi, the younger daughter of a famous dance-guru……and who is taught classical dance right from her childhood. Though she learns dance with all the necessary rules and how it is to be performed…..she isn’t really interested in becoming a great classical dancer. She is a kind of person more influenced towards the contemporary living and she feels learning dance doesn’t help her in any way. Right to the point…..her family lives in poverty because of her father getting ill and there would be no students for him to teach dance.
It is at this time Chandrashekar (Venkatesh) enters Meena’s life and immediately realizes that Meena has got extraordinary talent in dance but the only thing missing is her involvement in it. He tries to persuade her to give dance programme against her will…..and this leads to opinion differences between them. Despite this…..Chandu always visualizes Meena as a brilliant dancer and aspires to make her realize this fact.
This song comes in a situation while we progress towards the end of the movie……where situations arise in such a way that Meena gets to realize the importance of dance.
Starting with a brilliant sloka describing the importance of guru in life (it is at this time Meena misses her father and his teaching!)……and as Meena is going into a transforming phase…..she remembers her guru before she gets into the actual dancing part! The chorus joined with Vani Jayaram with her excellent voice creates such a wonderful impact on the listener!! Ending with a high note……the sloka quickly travels into a brilliant veena piece…..with occasional gaps giving us the feeling of the emotional changes which Meena’s character is going through!!
Then comes SPBs voice like a guiding light saying “Om Namo Namasshivayaa” on behalf of the character of Chandu saying Meena that he is there to support her in this phase.
Vani Jayaram gets to her best singing for Meena……supported by Veena and a faint bass work…..which doesn’t sound too dominating!! The next part is a gripping dance rhythm and an effective music bit which makes any listener alert looking for what is there next!!
Whenever I hear this song…..I feel I am actually seeing the music…….more than hearing it!! Only geniuses like Raaja sir could render such compositions where one can actually challenge our senses……by making us see his music!!
When Vani Jayaram starts singing the first line of the pallavi……..”Andhela Ravalidhi Padamuladha…….Ambaramantina Hrudayamudha” (Is this rhythm the music of my dance…..or my heart which has reached to the skies?)……the remaining music accompanying this line explains it all!! The humming……the rhythm…..in fact the whole feel of the music is just enough than a million words!! As the pallavi progresses……we feel we understand the exact feeling felt by Meena at that point of time.
SPB joins her with his brilliance and commanding voice……supported with an excellent rhythm as well as melodious veena bits in between…..saying that the time of realization has come for Meena now!!
When Vani Jayaram sings the pallavi line once again….the rhythm is slightly heavier than the first time…..creating even better effect on the listener!!
The first interlude starts with an excellent duo of flute and veena……joined immediately by violin and not to forget the phenomenal rhythm which has been following right from the beginning of the song…..giving us a feel of flowing of the purest of the pure form of a river……in the form of Meena’s heartfelt dance!!
Then we get into a leap of the excellent taala…..having the rhythmic treat for a little time……we get into the first charanam with an incredible pace!!
The first charanam is too appealing to hear…….started by Vani Jayaram showing all her brilliance in singing…..whereas the music is at its carnatic-best…..at the same time appealing to every person to appreciate it!! The charanam gathers its pace as it comes to the end…..showing the growing confidence in Meena’s character……that she can perform better and better than what she has been performing…….and now SPB joins her to support her attempt and at the same time improve her confidence levels. With this musical wonder……we approach the end of the first charanam…..but the brilliant rhythm continues!!
The second interlude starts with an excellent chorus…..ending with an excellent veena bit giving it added attraction!! Then we lead on to the flute brilliance with veena now……traveling far in music to a feeling of ecstasy in rhythm!!
Here comes the best part of the song……where the transformation of Meena as a brilliant dancer takes another stage……where SPB explains the meaning of each letter in the word “Om Namashivaya”….which is said by him in the beginning of the song…..I feel it is worth translating those jewel words here!! The rhythm stops here…..and we can only hear a faint chorus and SPBs voice of explaining each letter!!
In Raaja sir’s compositions…..even lack of numerous instruments creates music!!
It is worth to note the point that at the end of each line…..the pitch of the chorus changes…..giving a brilliant feel to the song!!
నయన తేజమే న కారమై
Nayana tejame na kaaramai….
(The light of vision is the letter Na)
మనో నిశ్చయం మ కారమై
Mano nishchayam ma kaaramai…..
(The determination of heart is the letter Ma)
శ్వాస చలనమే శి కారమై
Swaasa chalaname shi kaaramai….
(The steadiness in breath is the letter Shi)
వాంచితార్ధమే వ కారమై
Vaanchitaardhame va kaaramai….
(The meaning of your heart’s desire is the letter Va)
యోచన సకలం య కారమై
Yochana sakalam ya kaaramai….
(This whole idea of getting better is the letter Ya)
నాదం న కారం
Naadam Na kaaram
మంత్రం మ కారం
Manthram Ma kaaram
స్తోత్రం శి కారం
Sthothram Shi kaaram
వేదం వ కారం
Vedam Va kaaram
యజ్ఞం య కారం
Yagnam Ya kaaram
All this in union……leading us to the slokam!!
“Om Nama Shivaaya!”
By this line the transformation of Meena as a dancer with heart gets completed……and she goes on further excelling in her brilliance in dance….as there is no end to art!!
Right on topic…..I would say there is no end to Raaja sir’s music!!
Many Happy returns of the day Raaja sir!!!
Link for the ultimate realization!!