What can I say that doesn't sound like hyperbole....? Too much to describe in a few words, too many equisite moments to single out but a few. Speaking for myself, it was the most memorable 9 hours worth of musical greatness I would ever have hoped to experience. Even one or two of the performances would have been worth the trip to New York and the cost of the ticket. I'm not just talking about the music; there was not an empty seat during the whole performance. You can tell when an audience is focused - this one was virtually magnified. People hardly left their seats even during intermissions. Every applause was like someone had hit a grand slam at a world series baseball game - New Yorkers are usually very critical listeners - and not at all timid in their final assessment. I've been to numerous concerts of Pt. Vilayay Khansaheb, but never like this one - at 75 years he is even more agile, more subtle, and more dynamic than he has ever been. No one could be mistaken that he was very much pleased with the evening, with his playing and with the highly attentive and appreciative audience. Pt. Samir Chatterjee, my Guruji and organizer of this yearly event never fails to rise to the occasion and his enormous energy spread like a shower on everyone present. Guruji's accompaniment was equally inspiring not only to his soloists but to every musician that performed that evening. Sadly, G.S. Sachdev was unable to attend, apparently he collapsed during his flight to the concert the day before, but his place was very much aptly filled by bansurist Steve Gorn. I have never seen Pt. Sharda Sahai perform before this evening. Anyone who has will no doubt concur that his presence is both saint-like as his playing is god-like. At a full 90 minutes, his solo was a stunning continuum from the time his fingers first touched the tabla until the final sam was at last swallowed by the enormous applause.
Re:All Night review part 2 continued: Pts.Rajan and Sajam Misra easily could have gone for hours longer to everyone's delightful enjoyment but even though theirs was the final performance and no one was asleep it seemed more like the evening was about to begin again. Pt. Anindo Chatterjee... never let it be said that a tabla player cannot be equal in musical ability to any performer. As often as he attributes his learning to his teachers and masters, his style now his own equally masterful creation. The ease with which he performs, the glee and radiance expressed on his face and in his hands are unmatched. From where I was sitting near the front row I could witness both Pt. Sharda Sahai's and Pt. Samir Chatterjee's knowledgeable approval and attentive delight. Pt. Ramesh Mishra is always and especially this evening a cornerstone of Sarangi accompaniment. His opening phrases never failed to set the highest standard for the balance of each performance. His own solos are always equal to the primary soloist yet always seem somehow to express another subtle and surprising nuance of the raga being performed. This brief review is getting more lengthy than I planned and I haven't mentioned Smt. Tripti Mukherjee's (vocal) and Dibyarka Chatterjee's (tabla accompaniment) opening performance. Exept for the fact that they are both younger and lesser known performers theirs could easily have been the final performance at the level of energy and sweetness that was opened with and sustained from beginning to end, from darkness to daylight. I know I am generalizing greatly in this review. The hundreds of details still haven't sunk in and it would take me weeks to write just a partially detailed review. Even then it would take a something like a poet or an alchemist to convey the magic and the spells that were cast that evening. This was not an event you will ever expect to hear a recording of and if you did it would be virtually worthless in comparison to having been there. I am sorry for those of you who could not attend this year but you do have an opportunity now to begin planning your attendance at next year's all-nite performance on May 8th, 2004. I will personally guarantee the price of your ticket that you will not be in the least dissapointed. Aanaddha
Vijay (May 05, 2003 07:26 p.m.): Thank you very much for the details.....I seriously now regret not attending..... Oh well, definitely next year..! Vijay
Another home run: It's not exactly an 'all-nite' concert, but if you missed that one and you're in the mid-Atlantic region this weekend a few of the artists from the all-nite concert will be playing in Rockville, MD (D.C. suburbs) at 7:30 pm Saturday May 10. The artists are Pt. Anindo Chatterjee, Pt. Samir Chatterjee, and Sri Anubrata Chatterjee - that's just the tabla portion - the other artists are Pt. Ramesh Misra (sarangi), and Smt. Mitali Banerjee-Bhawmik (vocal). Where else can you hear this much quality tabla playing for the price of one ticket You may also want to stick around till the following day on Sunday afternoon for a tabla workshop with Pt.Anindo Chatterjee and Anubrata Chatterjee. Space will be limited. For details write to me Aanaddha@cox.net or firstname.lastname@example.org.
I wish I was there indeed. But never mind, there is Saptak coming at the end of the year. On the other hand, Zakir's concert on the 28th in London was also great with a great variation of performances(dance etc). In the end I had a great oportunity of shaking Zakir's hand and also shake the hand of Pt Shiv Kumar Sharma.