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Telugu Ghazal Maestro Impresses


Atlanta, Georgia: The Telugu community in Atlanta was immersed in mellifluous Telugu ghazals rendered by ghazal maestro Dr. Srinivas on Saturday November 10, 2007 at the Hindu Temple of Atlanta, Riverdale auditorium for the benefit of Society for Rural Scholars.

Dr. Srinivas mesmerized the audience with a soulful rendition of his ghazals. He took the audience to their childhood days and every one in the auditorium choked with emotion. It may not be out of place to mention that except for a couple of people in Atlanta no one knew about ghazals in the Telugu language. The organizers advised them to come and see for themselves. After coming to this Ghazal program, people sat through the entire program and encouraged the artist with continuous applause.

Today, the ghazal often being sung as a `raga' to the accompaniment of classical Indian instruments. But Srinivas’s care free, effortless and melodious singing with Kanjeera, a common instrument, as his only accompaniment made the audience spell bound. Along with singing, the ghazal maestro analyzed each stanza of the Ghazal that sang and explained the hidden literary beauty of it. He convinced the audience that the ghazals sung by him were about themselves, their villages and their kith and kin.

Srinivas sang ten ghazals in more than two hours reminiscing about childhood days, mother’s love and affection, the value and greatness of the native place (janma bhoomi), importance of wife and about relationships. His rich melodious voice and the inspiring message of his Ghazals made them ring in the hearts of the audience. He started his ghazals with “Patchigali snehamto pranam bagundi” a theme on morning walk written by Rentala Sri Venkateswara Rao. Every Ghazal is a gem and moved audience with emotion. Ghazal Srinivas sang “Okkasari Ravalani Ennalluga Pilustunti Swami” a theme if God comes to our house how would one feel and host God. Okkasari Voori poyiraa batikina pallekosamu, reminder to visit native place where one is grown up. “….Sarvasvam neekistha naa balyam naakitcheyi…” a reminder of childhood days of every one. Another ghazal "Okkasari nannu thitti vandasarlu yedchindi Okkasari nannu kotti rojantha pasthundi….” a tribute to the selfless LOVE of mother. Singing Ghazals, explaining its inner meaning coupled with anecdotes continued with another ghazal "Illu ipudu illulaga leneledu…” was revealing the sacrifices of a wife to her husband and family. In the ghazal “Mee vooru nee kusal madagamandi” audience experienced as if they were in their native places and witnessing the happenings there. A ghazal on the fleetingness of life, "Andarini prematho palakarinchu…marala eedarina vasthavoraavo". His message called for a universal behavior change to love our family, friends and the fellow human beings.

The origin of Ghazals dates back to 7th century and it is a poetic expression consisting of couplets. Ghazals in Telugu language is adapted recently from Urdu Ghazals. Ghazals in Telugu language is a literary fete and the credit for this should go to the Telugu literary legends like Dasarathi and Dr. C. Narayana Reddy who hail from that region and successfully introduced Ghazals in the Telugu language.

Dr. Srinivas is a pioneer of singing Telugu ghazals and spreading Telugu culture, heritage, tradition and its language through out the world. He has performed about 6000 concerts and every concert becomes an experience by itself.

Throughout the program the audience clapped non-stop and joined the rhythm of Dr. Srinivas and his only companion, the musical instrument Kanjeera, and offered a standing ovation at the end of the program.

The Telugu Association of Metro Atlanta (TAMA) and The Hindu Temple of Atlanta, Riverdale felicitated Ghazal Maestro Dr. Srinivas separately in recognition of his contributions in spreading Telugu culture, heritage and its language through ghazals world wide.

Earlier, Dr. Ravindra Alapati, founder, Society for Rural Scholars explained the objectives of the foundation following which a short documentary on the foundation was shown. Ramesh Duvvuri, cultural coordinator emceed the event.


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