Wednesday, June 11, 2008

A Heartfelt Homage to Mami!!!


It has been a year since my Guru Shmt. Mangalam Muthuswamy left for her heavenly abode. Mami as we fondly called her was a terrific Vainika. The passion, Love and respect she had for the art was commendable. I had the privilege of being under her tutelage for 3 years to undergo advanced training in playing the Veena. 3 years may not seem too long- but then from the perspective of a student, it was indeed a very refreshing experience. My mind was exposed to an extremely intriguing dimension of the Veena. The manner in which mami's fingers used to move along the frets was simply a treat to watch. The patience with which she would teach us things was something none us would ever be able to forget. Even today when I sit with my Veena and play the last charanam of "Endaro MahanuBhavulu'-
Bhagavatha Ramayana Gitadi Shruti Shastra PurAnapu Marmamulanu
Shivati Shunmatamula GUdamulan Moppadimukkoti SurAnta
[an]Tarangamula BhAvambula Nerigi BhavarAga LayAdi Sowkyamuce cir
Ayuvula Galigi Niravadi SokAtmulai TyagarAjatmulainavA
(Meaning : -Those who know the secret of Bagavatha, Ramayana, Gita, Sruti, Sasthra, Epic, various religious thoughts, the thoughts of the 33 crores of Devas, bhava, raga, tala and they have a long life and enjoy all good things )

I remember how emotionally involved mami would get. The meaning of the charanam mentioned above was something mami would tell us time and again. It still gets back tears to my eyes and I believe none of us would ever be able to come to terms with her demise. When I listen to the recordings that we did in class in the course of learning, the sound of her Sindhubhairavi and Supapanthubvarali Thanam, the Shivaranjini Thillana( By Maharajapuram Santhanam) and the Thodi Ragam that she played, still gives me goose pimples….her enthusiasm to experiment with the veena would be something we would always cherish. Apart from being a Guru, she was a child at heart ever ready to join us to have a cup of ice cream or Junk Food or to simply gossip about things happening in our lives. The fun sessions of endless hours is something that would always motivate all her students to keep going, keep the luminous tradition alive and promote the Art of playing the Veena.

Her loss was indeed a loss to the world of music. May your soul rest in peace!!

3 comments:

Padma said...

No words Gayatri...Its an impeccable loss...But she is still with us...I see her playing and singing everyday...

babul said...

she is all with u

Supriya said...

i was her student in 1986 and i can comfortably say she was an expert teacher and a very nice person, totally humble about her immense gift.