I get goose pimples whenever i see Sitar being performed on stage by the maestro. This was my second time – fifteen years back I heard Pandit Ravi Shankar and yesterday it was Ustad Shahid Parvej.
Ustad ji can make a string instrument sing. My ears are still ringing with the musical notes of the aalap he played in Rag Bageshree teasing the second string with the nail of his little finger he made sitar sound more musical than itself.
The Jod and jhala was accompanied by the wondrous tabla player Anurdha Pal – India’s only woman performing tabla artist and disciple of Ustad Alla Rakha and Ustad Zakir Husain. Her playfulness with the accompanying sitarist was very reminiscent of Ustad Alla Rakha’s and Ustad Zakir husain’s, rising above the role of just an accompanying tabla player she struck balance between the accompaniment and showed her mastery with ease.
The surprise package of the concert was when Ustad ji took break from traditional rag playing and started striking the stings of sitar to “mohe panghat pe nandlal ched gayo re”. It took audience a while to realise it and then everyone gasped when he made the sitar sing the song.