Sunday, September 18, 2011

A date with T N Krishnan

The Sriraj couple (D-1202) hosted an evening of carnatic music at the Clubhouse, Saturday evening. The idea came from his parents,now spending a few weeks with Mr Sriraj at Mantri Synergy. As a long-time Kodambakkam resident, Mr Sampath Iyengar has been brought up in the 'music sabha culture'. A concert at one of the five or six sabhas is his idea of a well spent evening. Concert music is something Mr Iyengar missed at the Mantri's.
So do several other Mantri residents with flair for music. A lady at last night's music event asked if this was going to be a weekly affair.A weekly music Saturday may not be feasible,if we rely on a specified individual to organise it for us.
Mr Sriraj has shown us how an individual initiative can make for an interesting community evening.
Any music lover with a prized video cassette to share with like-minded others, could take the initiative to host a Sriraj-like music evening. And this need not necessarily be done on a Saturday. Any evening convenient to the host, and the interested peer group would be okay. After all, audience for such niche events comprise mainly the elderly and the retired who would be happy any day, to spend 90 minutes listening to music in company.
Community events help us discover other Mantri residents with similar interests. Last night's music event gave my wife and I a talking point on our morning walk with Mr Sriraj's father, a connoisseur with family ties with music legends such as MS and Semmangudi. Mr Sampath Iyengar partnered Sadasivam in their daily card-playing sessions at his Kotturpuram residence. As a bonus Mr Iyengar got treated to snacks and steaming coffee served by MS herself. Mr Iyengar recalled how Semmangudi,a friend his father, used to be an unfailing guest at the family lunch every New Year's Day.
My wife and I meet Mr Iyengar daily on our walks, but we didn't 'discover' him so much as we did this morning.The Saturday music event that we attended and enjoyed together gave us something fresh to talk about. The clubhouse DVD shows can be extended to an evening of gazals, Hindusthani music,Rabindra sangeet, Harikatha or whatever that interests us as a community.
A clubhouse date with T N Krishnan reminds me of my New Delhi schooldays when some of my father's friends used to meet at our Karolbagh 'barsathi' every Saturday night for listening to A Date with You,a Western music programme on AIR, hosted by Roshan Menon. This was early 50s, years before TV, when radio was the in thing.

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