Kala Vahini, an organization formed to promote Indian music, literature and dance had a stupendous debut in Dallas, TX on Sunday June 10th . The concert was a tribute to “Manasu Kavi” Aacharya Aatreya. It consisted of a medley of songs penned by the great legend. The packed audience of about five hundred in the Granville Arts Center enjoyed a nostalgic journey into seventies and eighties reminiscing the great hits from yesteryears. SP Balasubrahmanyam's role was played by star of the event Ramu Maharajapuram. “Nightingale sisters” Shilpa and Deepika Uppuluri played the roles of P.Susheels and S.Janaki. Not to be outdone, Ghanta Krishna Prasad who flew from Baltimore filled the role of Ghantsala. They were perfectly complemented by an amazing band of local singers from Dallas area.
The program featured 19 songs by Dallas area singers in the initial round and 25 songs by the distinguished singers in the main round of the concert. It covered a gamut of Aatreya's songs from 60s, 70s and 80s. Dallas Singers segment was presented by Ananth Mallavarapu..
The program had an auspicious opening in the form of the “Agajanana padmarkam” slokam by Seeta Lakshmi Petluri. It was then perfectly tuned by the song "Naa Gonthu Sruthilona” from the movie “Jaanaki Raamudu” by Bhaskar Rayavaram and Aparna Remani. Kalyani Tadimeti and Ramesh Kalapatapu regaled the audience with the song "Chetilo Cheyyesi Cheppu Baava” from the movie “Dasara Bullodu”.
Chandrahas Maddukuri and Lavanya showered melodius droplets on the audience by singing arguably the greatest romantic rain song "Chitapata Chinukulu Paduthoo Unte" from the movie Atma Balam. Bhaskar and Aparna wrapped their part by singing “Thongi Thongi Choodamaka Chandamaama” from the movie “Sreeranga Neethulu”.
Later Gopinath Petluri and Jyothi Sadhu mesmerized the audience with the question “Tella Cheera Kattukunnadevari Kosamu?”, an evergreen romantic hit from the movie "Anthasthulu”. The young musical talent Veena Devaraju along with her father Ramam Devaraju beautifully rendered the song "Neelaala Ningilo" from the movie “Jebu Donga”.
Kalyani Tadimeti reminded everyone of the “one and only” Shavukaru Janaki by singing the song with folk lyrics "Pandavulu Pandavulu Tummeda" from the movie “Akka Chellellu”. The next solo song “Aakasam Enaatido” from the movie “Nireekshana” came from the mellifluous voice of Srujana Aduri. It was ably followed by the song "Sumam Prati Sumam" from the movie “Nireekshana” by Suresh Pathaneni and Khyati Kondepati.
The next song, an all time classic "Mella Mella Mellagaa Anuvanuvu Neevega" from the movie "Daagudu Mootalu" was beautifully rendered by Samba Karnati and Kasturi Inanganti and was followed by another old time favorite "Neeli Meghamaa Jaali Choopuma" from the movie "Ammaayila Sapatham" by Srinivas Eyyunni and Veena Yalamanchali.
Ramam Devaraju and Srujana Aduri brought the audience back to the 70s with the song "Neekosam Velasindi Prema Mandiram" from the movie “Prem Nagar”. With the song “EenadE EdO ayyindi" from the movie “Prema”, Srinivas Eyyunni and Jaya Kalyani truly made the audience feel “something happened on the concert day”.
Next Kasturi Innanganti sang the evergreen classic "Neevu Leka Veena Palukalenannadi" from the movie "Doctor Chakravarthy”. "Yaha!! silaka. Silaka.. ” Suresh Pathaneni corrected Khyati Kondepati in the song “Naa Paata Nee Nota Palakala Silaka" from the movie Mooga Manasulu.
Samba Karnati and Veena Yalamanchali then sang the beautiful duet "Repanti roopam kanti" from the movie"Manchi Chedu".
Vikram Gandikota with his silvery voice enthralled the audience with the song "Jaabilli Kosam Aakaasamalle Vechanu" from the movie “Manchi Manasulu”. The surreptitious love song "Chaatu Maatu Sarasamulo Ghaatu Unnadi" from the movie “Secretary” was hilariously sung by Gopinath and Jyothi providing a fitting end to the Dallas singers part of the concert.
In a brief interlude to the program, Ramachari the founder of Little Musicians Academy and a Nandi award winner thanked the organizers and praised the local singers effusively. He felt that there are no amateurs among these singers. He opined that Sruti, Laya, Bhasha, Bhavam and Presentation are the five components that constitute a great performance and gave some practical tips to the singers for taking their art to the next level.
After a great appetizer from the local singers the main course of the “Paadaalane Unnadi” concert started with the title song "Paadalane Unnadi" from the movie “Chillara Devullu” by Ramu.
"E Teega Poovuno E Komma TetinO" sang the melodious younger nightingale Deepika and “Appadiya” said Ramu. The other nightingale Shilpa started with the melancholic song "Amma Choodali Ninnu Naannau Choodali" from the movie “Paapam Pasivadu” and tuned the audience to the other songs that followed later in the evening.
Prasad Ghanta was almost like Ghantasala while singing “Andamaina Teegaku Pandirunte Chaalunu" from the movie “Bhaarya Biddalu". Ramu and Deepika sang the beautiful duet “Nela Meedi Jaabili" from the movie “Raja Ramesh".
Ramu then sang a medley of Pallavulu “Edukondalavaada Venkatesa”, “Navvutoo Batakalira Tammudu”, “Sirimalle Poovalle Navvu”, “Kanne Pillavani Kannulunnavani” and “Harilo Ranga Hari”
“Neevu Leka Nenu Lenu” and so sang Ramu and Shilpa making the audience long for that “significant other” without whom they don't have any existence. This song is from the movie “Manchi Manushulu”.
Deepika and Ramu poured melody into the beautiful duet “Kalyana Vaibhogame" from the movie “Seeta Rama Kalyanam".
Ramana Juvvadi, the founder of KalaVahini explained that Sangeetam, Sahityam and Nrutyam are the focus of the organization.The sponsors were honored and were presented menetos by Aravind Muppidi. KC Chekuri and Thotakura Prasad felicitated Ramu. Sandhya Gavva, Dr. Alla Srinivasa Reddy and Indu Reddy Mandadi felicitated the nightingale sisters Deepika and Shilpa Uppuluri.
Ghanta Krishna Prasad was honored by Srinivas Bavireddy and Suresh Manduva.
While Ramu sang, Harshit Vanam and Vaishant Devineni danced and enthralled the audience to the tune of “Sapatu Etoo Ledu Paataina Paadu Brother” from the movie “Akali Rajyam”. Harshit interspersed Kamal Hasan's dance with a few steps of NTR and ANR which further increased the response. Ramu and Shilpa then sang “Rangulalo Kalavo" from the movie “Abhinandana".
Chandrahas explained the possible background in the life of Aatreya that made him pen forlorn songs such as “Nenoka Prema Pipasini" from the movie "Indradhanussu". Ramu then poured the heart of Aatreya into his voice while singing the melancholic solo.
“Malle pandiri needa lona jaabilli” from the movie"Maayadari Malligadu" is a favorite song for many a participants in several musical contests and Deepika demonstrated the reason for the same. Ramana Juvvadi explained to the audience about the talent and the close bond between the two Uppuluri sisters, Deepika and Shilpa. Alongwith Ramu, the nightingales then sang "Aakesi Pappesi Neyyesi Buvvesi" picturized on two sisters in the movie “Abhimanyudu".
The next song was a romantic melody. Ramu was accompanied by a Dallas physician Dr. Kasturi Inaganti while singing “Cheeralettukellada Chinni Krishnudu” from the movie “Chilipi Krishnudu”.
Next, Ramana Juvvadi explained the literary beauty of the song “Navvulu Ruvve Puvvamma” from “Gajula Kistaiah” where each line in the song describes a flower as well as a beautiful girl. The literary beauty was matched by the beauty of Ramu's voice.
Deepika and Ramu then sang a beautiful composition “Emani Varninchanu" that captures the feelings of a blind sister and her loving brother from the movie “Driver Ramudu”.
"Raayini Aadadi Chesina Raamudiva?" wondered Jyothy Sadhu. Ramu shot back “Nuvvu Raayivi Kaavu Gangavu Kaavu" from the movie “Trisoolam”. Deepavali arrived a little early in Dallas as Prasad Ghanta and Deepika sang “Cheekati Velugula Rangeli, Jeevitame Oka Deepavali" from the movie “Vichitra Bandham".
"Vela Chooda Vennelaaye..." from the movie “Naatakaalaraayudu“- not one of the most well known songs of Aatreya but nevertheless will be one for Dallas audience going forward – thanks to the great voice of Shilpa. “Janaki Kalagana Ledu Raamudu Pati Kaagaladani Aanadu” - a song that captures the essence of nuptial relationship from the movie “Raj Kumar” was superbly sung by Ramu and Deepika.
Ramachari presented mementos to Dallas singers. Ramu effusively praised the local talent and opined that they cannot be termed as just amateur singers at all. The next part of the concert started with the song “Urakalai Godavari" from the movie “Abhilaasha" and was sung by Ramu and Shilpa with chorus support from her sister. “Aho Andaala Raasi, Oho Alanaati Urvasi” sang Ramu and the audience echoed “Ahaa Oho” to the song from the movie “Angadi Bomma”
The next song was “Palikinadi Pilichinadi” from the movie Seetaramulu. Chandrahas loved Aatreya;s usage “Gaganaalinganotsaahiyai”. After the song Ramu explained that it is a very difficult song for the singers because of the range of low to high notes they have to express.
Next came the song “Daa Daa Daa Daaste Daageda” by Ramu and Shilpa from the movie Yugandhar (Don) – which probably is one of the only movies that was done twice in each of Telugu, Tamil and Hindi. No program ends without the great song – "Kurralloy Kurrallu” from the movie “Andamaina Anubhavam". The audience sang, clapped and danced to the charged up song presented with all emotion by Prasad Ghanta, Ramu, Chandrahas, Ananth, Ramana and other local singers.
Ramana Juvvadi thanked all sponsors, TANA, ATA, NATA, NATS, TANTEX, IANT, Yuva Media, Indu Creations, Speech-Soft Solutions, OurPlace, Mayuri, Omega travels, EkNazar, RadioKushi and DesiPlaza and the volunteers and organizers Arvind Muppidi, Anath Mallavarapu, Chandrahas Maddukuri, KC Chekuri, Suresh Kaja, Rajendra Narayan Das, Krishna Puttaparthi, Manohar Nimmagadda, Krishna Korada, Sivprasad Kodela.
Kasturi Inaganti thanked the couple Sridevi and Ramana Juvvadi for organizing a great concert.
“Antharyaami alasiti solasiti” from the movie Annamayya capped the program paying rich tributes to late Aatreya.
click here for SP Balu concert in Bay Area.