I had the golden opportunity to participate in "Idhaya Geethangal" - the June 30th concert, in Nehru Indoor Stadium, Chennai last Saturday. I too waited to read comments from any other members like everyone. But since no one has written, let me share with you my opionion and experience.
Though the Event was publized for more than a month all over Tamil Nadu by Lakshman Sruthi Orchestra, the selection of songs were very general as well very much repeatedly heard songs. The output of the orchestra was also poor. In many cases, the troup persons (esp tabla) missed out 'thalam'. When Lakshman didnt notice that, Balu sir took pain to correct them by sitting in a chair closer to them and conducting the musical scores.
Concert was supposed to begin by 6pm. It started exactly by 6.03 with the troupe members singing devotional songs. Chitra mam arrived at 6.45pm & our Giant entered around 7.15pm in white & white attire (nice to see). He didnt talk much like usual.
Lakshman announced to the gathering that this year Sir has completed 68years. He bowed to his beloved audience with folded hands. Lakshman also announced that Chitra mam was unwell and down due to chest congestion & wheezing. It was
very sad to see her taking tablets for each song and to give her best renderation. While SIr was adding extra flavours to most of his songs, Chitra mam presented her portions mostly the way it was and both were pleasing to hear.
Most of the music-fanatic rasigas felt the same disappointed feeling - that the selection of songs could have been better. Infact there are plenty of songs available. But dont know why Lakshman Sruthi picked up the mostly repeatedly heard songs again & again for such a big event. There were 70% of the seats occupied and the programme ended by 10.15p.m.
People who wanted to contribute for Sri Sankara Heart Foundation as a charity towards young children taking treatment there, were encouraged to donate. Balu sir mentioned he converted for the free pass he used to get to a cheque and handed over to them. His sister (shailaja mam) who wanted to get pass from him, also gave money for the tickets and got them - he added.
Charan came along with his new wife and was invited by Bhavana (the anchor) to the stage. He sang with shyness, "Ayyayo" song very well with his dad. Balu sir thanked (!) Charan as a producer for given him 'chance' to sing 'nan pogiren mele mele' song from the movie "Nanayam". He commented smilingly that his movie contributed more awards but not collection!
SPB mentioned that he feels it as a great pleasure to work with the 4th generation for 'Ayyayo' song. (1st generation-Sri MSV & others; 2nd generation - The Maestro period; 3rd genration - A.R.Rehman & others). Vijay TV anchorer Bhavana was compering. She mentioned why whenever we tune on FM in the nights, we only hear his songs. Sir replied humbly that "others songs are also aired. But my songs - you will be hearing frequently." Then she added how is that it's possible 40,000 songs and from where he got the techniques of chuckling/whining (happy notes he makes in between songs). He replied "from the factory of his parents" and added Chitra & SPB's first duet was kalakalamaga (punnagai mannan). From those days till today, she remains very soft as well as a down to earth personality, though she is one of the very finest singers in the country; whereas he sees today upcoming singers who have just finished one or two songs ; waving hands at him & saying "Hi Sir...?"
Sir gave few interesting anecdotes like he was supposed to play Chevaliar SIvaji Ganesan's role in Muthal mariyathai, as he & Bharathiraja were friends before coming to cine field itself. He added - "Those days I was singing 4 to 5 songs recorded on a single day. When I was asked to sign 45 days calsheet at a stretch, I was taken aback. Whether anyone would give me a chance to sing when I come back after 1.5 months, was my greatest worry then. So i asked Bharathiraja to excuse me. Whereas my non-participating in the movie worked out well. Else we all would have missed Nadigar Thilagam's performance in that movie!"
He appealed to his beloved audience to take care of our health; to avoid obesity in order to lead a healthy life! Further requested with folded hands that men should not urinate in public which is most undesirable thing he hates to see in the City.
For the restless friends - Here are the list of the June 30th Concert songs:
1. Kuzhaloodum Kannanuku (K.S.C.)
2. Chinna Kuyil Padum Pattu ketkudha? (K.S.C.)
3. Ilayanila Pozhigiradhe (SPB)
4. Chinna Mani Kuyile (SPB)
5. Aalapol velapol (K.S.C. & SPB)
6. Adi Vanmathi (K.S.C. & SPB)
7. Idhayam oru kovil (SPB)
8. Kala Kala maga vazhum kadhaluku (K.S.C. & SPB)
9. Nan Pogiren mela mele (K.S.C. & SPB)
10. Rumbumbam (K.S.C. & SPB)
11.Poove poochadava (K.S.C.)
12. Idhazhil kadai ezhudum neramidhu (K.S.C.&SPB)
13. Guruvayurappa (K.S.C. & SPB)
14. Ayyayo Nenju Alaiyudadi (SPB, Charan & troup female)
15. Yamma Yamma Kadal ponnamma (SPB & troup female)
16. Padariyen padipariyen (K.S.C.)
17. Uyire Uyire (Bombay) (K.S.C. & Vijay TV Prasanna)
18. Yethodo ennam valarthen (K.S.C.)
19. Manram Vanda Thenraluku (SPB)
20. Anjali Anjali pushpanjali (K.S.C. & SPB)
21. Udaya geetham paduven (SPB)
22. Mannil Inda Kadhal (K.S.C. & SPB)
23. Ovuru Pookalume solgirathey (K.S.C.)
One good thing by Lakshman Sruthi: He suggested the audience to give standing ovation to the two living legends, by which Balu sir was totally moved. Upon we getting up & honouring them, he practically prostrated in the stage which was touching to me. Nothing can compete to his modesty and the way he respects his profession as well love his beloved fans.
We too love you Balu Uncle, for the person you are, by all means.
SPB Fans' Charitable Foundation member
Coimbatore Fans Thanks to Mrs. Priya Venkat,Chennai