Swathi Kiranam Part-I

Its a pleasure to write about K Vishwanath movies any time. How one can forget the melodious honey sweet musical elegance carried so beautifully in his films.The stories are meant for showcasing the actor’s hidden talent.so far no actor/actress had not been unsuccesful in outdoing her self when it comes to a character played in his movies.Also the story line is so connected, so real ,authentic and yet simple enough to touch the audience hearts.Even today i would simply sit back and watch across his films on tv any time of the day.It inspires me to do something new everytime i watch them. He never left any stone unturned in trying to show what tradition & cultural values our indian arts have.Also his capability to strike the right chord with the audience with good subjects and characters which makes us feel homely like.

Among many such wonderful films,i chose to take up this,which actually inspired me to write when i was watching it at home the other day.

Arts was always the chosen subject of cinema for K Vishwanath films. Swathi Kiranam is also one such films which depicts about a man’s journey in trying to overcome his egoistic feelings which arouses when a prodigious young disciple of his showcases his extraordinary talent to the world.

An old man with shabby looks and tattered clothes sits in a temple. temple bell rings and a boy comes near him and sings.Seeing this the old man turns his back and moves away from him. later he goes to bathe in the temple tank(pushkarini in telugu) there he sees the boy standing in water just below where water is falling on him and hears him sing.he turns around to see him only to realize that he was imagining all these things.He walks into the village where some villagers see him and gather around and discuss that he is the person who kidnaps the children from their village. They assume him to be the kidnapper seeing his unkempt attire and doubtful looks.They beat him and take him to the village PS. The police in charge (Achuth) hears the villagers and goes to take a look at the person, what they have described as man with body so stiff as iron rod and red flaring eyes as that of Lord Narsimha Swamy. As he turns around to see he is surprised to see the person in front of him is none other than Ananthrama Sarma(Mammooty) who was a Great carnatic sangeetha samrat long back.Seeing him in semi conscious state he offers him water.The police is none other than Radhakrishna one of the persons who knew Ananthrama Sarma and quite respected him and also his family.He writes a letter to his mother seeking advice on what should be done as he has seen him in such a pitiful condition.His mother takes the letter and burns it. In the backdrop a photo frame of a boy is seen and we are taken into the flashback …

A huge procession follows with an elephant and a man sitting on it is being welcomed and honored with flowers and garlands. Among the onlookers standing aside are a boy and a woman.The boy asking the woman who the man is .The woman replies He is Ananthrama Sarma,The ‘Apara Tyaga Brahma,Sangeetha samrataniki makutam leni maharaju who has earned himself this great honors and respect from people because of his laudable talent.The boy (Gangadhar) also wishes that he too would one day sit like that and earn people’s repsect towards him.The woman who is his sangeetham guru tells him, the day he also excels in his music talent that day he would be given such repsect and honour.

Gangadhar is a cheerful naughty boy who likes to play with his fellow boys along side the river godavari in his village.His group of friends take part in his mischievous acts.At school he sings the daily prayer song and on that day he sings the song ” Vandeshambhu Uma Patim” in kalyani ragam initially.then he thinks about changing the ‘Ragam’ to which the teacher scolds him and sends him out of the class. He thinks and sings it in ‘Arabhi Ragam’ which his music teacher taught.The teacher and his fellow clasmates are amazed by his talent.Such is the beauty of talent of Gangadhar,who thinks to sing a song in a new manner. which according to me is possible for very few.

Among his kacheris one of them being where Ananthram Sarma along with his wife Sarada (Radhika) who takes part along with him in all his kacheris,sings “Sangeetha Sahitya Samalamkruthe” in front of Sri Ganapathi Sacchidananda Swamy.Impressed by his singing talent,they assign him a task of composing tunes for the lyrics of Sri Sarada Devi.


After knowing he is got the Padmasri Award.which is quite prestigious award,
He rejects it offered by the government saying that he is not singing for someone to recognize his talent or to honor him with some award.He is doing this for his sake. For the sake that he likes to sing and to enjoy. Also he does not like to share this with people who are not talented enough but yet consider themselves so.In response to one of the question posed by Journos he says that in expecting what awards did eternal Tyagaraya sang and composed so many songs? is a Padmasri a measure to check the height of one talent? He considers the peoples recognition of his talent as the only award.

This surely makes a mockery of the govt in not recognizing the correct people and awarding them at the right time.Talent can never be measured! Must say it was shown very nicely by KV garu.

During one of his tours Ananthrama Sarma & his wife had to visit a temple to attend a ceremony.He is being offered to stay at the house of Gangadharam’s teacher. not able to afford their child Gangadharam’s parents strive for a livelihood by running a small hotel and managing to send him to school and to make him learn music at the teacher’s house.The Teacher understands his parents worry and tries to put it across Sarma’s wife Sarada. The teacher tells about the boy’s talent in singing and his ability to sing at such a young age. She requests her to train the boy under her husband’s guidance so that would help him reach new heights of his singing ability.As they stand near the river side,hearing a sweet voice singing'”Tolimanchu Karigindhi” Sarada is impressed by this and enquires about the boy.Teacher tells he is the same boy about whom she was telling. Sarada tells her to bring the boy Gangadhar to his husband and that she would assure her that he would train him.

Later Gangadhar visits the temple along with his teacher only to hear Ananthram sarma sing a Verse of vedamantram in a different Raaga. Gangadhar looks around to find that people around him like this.But he is a little surprised as he thinks how can one sing a vedamantram into a song.The next day his turn to sing in front of the renowed singer arrives and he chooses to recite a vedamantra and starts reciting it. sarma & other’s listen to it keenly.Sarma rather seems pleased by gangadhar’s talent.Suddenly in the middle of the song Gangadhar sings into “awara hoon” tune.The famous Raj Kapoor song,to which Sarma is unimpressed and asks him to stop singing.At home and at his school he faces criticism.His parents tell him that he got a golden chance to showcase his talent in front of the godly talented man.but with his foolishness he ruined it all.At school his master orders other student to sing the prayer song rather than Gangadhar. saying that he doesn’t want any “Awara” to sing and spoil the mood of the class discipline.His music teacher also doesn’t allow him into the class.Unable to bear this he thinks of jumping into the nearby river.His parents come and persuade him. he questions them that when a person like Sarma sings a mantra into a song then what’s wrong in he doing the same? I just wanted to change the Raaga and sing it in a new tune.To this his parents tell him that

“Aaayana lanti pedda sangeetha vidvaanshulu veda mantraani paata ga padarante adi ayana tanmayulu ayyi chesaru.Nuvu inka chala nerchukovali.. anthati vidhvaansudu kavalante aayana lanti valli aasisulu kavali. velli kshamapana adugu”

A carnatic music samrat like him can sing a veda mantra like a song. as he is well versed in music and is highly knowledgeable.and that too he did out of devotional bliss.he should at least now go and ask for mercy and that at this point he should seek blessings from such a man.

Gangadhar goes to Anathrama sarma’s home only to find that the couple indulges in composing a tune for a song. He hears them sing “Pranathi Pranathi”. and enjoys the composition by the couple.The song is a tribute to nature as Pranathi signifies nature in telugu.Sweet like nature the song sweetness touches ones heart.

Sarma composes it in Nata Raagam.Meanwhile Gangadhar too sits in the verandah and composes a different tune for the same song.after the song is completed Sarada comes down and Gangadhar asks her what a beautiful song it was and what was the meaning of it? she replies saying

“Pranathi pranathi pranathi Pranava naada jagathiki” means
“Omkara nadam nindina ee jagathiki ee prakruthiki namaskaristhunanu ani”

We are saluting to this nature and world filled with ‘Omkara nadham’.

She enquires him about his presence at their home and he tells her i have come here to offer my apologies to sir. I should not have sung like that.just because a carnatic samrat like him can sing a vedamantra into a song doesn’t mean he too can sing like that.and Sarada reciprocates saying He did it out of devotional bliss and Gangadhar still has a long way to go…she tells him if only her husband could have
heard the song he sang on the river side he would have been pleased.

To this Gangadhar replies i have come for that purpose only.Sarada tells him that there’s a better opportunity for him and informs him about the Music academy competition being held and asks him to attend that.She tells this time around he has to make it in front of her husband. To this he replies ” Gudilo ammavaru laga cheptunaru kadha, tappu chesthe kallu povu”. Sarada tells him that she’s not Goddess but a mother like to him.

Radhika’s role as a wife to a renowned carnatic scholar and as well as her motherly concern towards the boy was laudable.

On the day of the competition Gangadhar arrives at the venue and the competition is judged by Ananthram Sarma. Gangadhar sings the song ” Pranathi Pranathi ” the same song which was sung by the couple at their house. Sarma hears him sing with a different tune and is impressed by his talent. But he doesn’t include Gangadhar’s name in the final list. being disappointed,his teacher goes to Sarma’s house to find the reason behind his not selection. but Sarma refrains from giving reason saying
‘For a Mother her child’s cry or laugh is always sweet but, for a teacher its different. You may like whatever he sings but i had to look into the technicalities of his singing where he could not prove himself’. RadhaKrishna the police officer(Achyuth) who is also the teacher’s son thinks this to be a downplay by Sarma.
He says the real reason behind Sarma not selecting the boy might not be what he told to her but might be that the boy can become competition to him.Here the audience is brought in touch with what Sarma as a person is. The Teacher keeps Sarma’s Talent Persona and Stature in mind and says how can a person of such great accomplice think a boy to be a competition to him. A boy who can’t even sing a well versed Raaga in this age, how can he be a threat to the Great Musician .But the RadhaKrishna is otherwise stuck to his belief.This forms the main crux of the further plot.

Sarada meets the teacher and persuades her to let Gangadhar stay with them in their huse.She tells that though she and her husband are blessed by Goddess Saraswati and Lakshmi, they don’t have the fortune of becoming parents.More so as Gangadhar is blessed with such a beautiful voice and rhythm he would get no better opportunity than this to learn music in their house.Gangadhar begins to stay in Sarma’s house. away from his parents and friends.

In the Next part there will be interesting turn in the story.how the boy showcases his talent in front of the world and whether Anantha Rama Sarma will be able to cope up with this ? or would he encourage him ? let meet up there…. πŸ™‚

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