LONG BEACH, CA - An afternoon filled with music dedicated to the life of M. S Subbulakshmi performed by Sudha Raghunathan and her team consisting of M. Rajeev on the violin; Thiruvarur Vaidyanathan on mridangam, and R. Raman on morsing. The program was hosted by the Sankara Nethralaya,
Starting off the program, Raja Krishnamurthi made presentations on Sankara Nethralaya which was followed by a video of M.S. Subbulakshmi’s affiliation with the organization. Then the curtains opened for the show to begin after an introduction of Raghunathan and the musicians. Raghunathan and her team performed in the typical Carnatic concert format in which the first half of the set were classical numbers. “Maate Malaya Dhwaja” was the opening piece. After dealing with a few glitches with the sound system, Raghunathan took the time to wish everyone in the audience a `Happy Ganesh Chaturthi.’She then continued with her performance, singing a Ganesha Slokam in celebration of Ganesh Chaturthi. A few more songs later Raghunathan and her team performed her main keystone piece,‘ Needu Charana.’ Then she performed various bhajans and devotional songs. “Pyaare Darshan Deejo,” “Naa Naati,” and “Dasana Madiko Ena,” were some of the bhajans Raghunathan sang which were popularized by M. S. Subbulakshmi.
In total, Raghunathan entertained the appreciative audience with 12 songs in various languages such as Sanskrit, Tamil, Telugu, Hindi, and Kannada. All of the songs she sang were written by various composers and made popular by M. S. Subbulakshmi.
A highlight of the show was the song “Maitreem Bhajata” which was the song M. S. Subbulakshmi sang at the famous United Nations concert. With this song, the first thing that should come to mind is M. S. Subbulakshmi;nothing and no one else. The concert performed at the United Nations by here was a historical moment and the song is considered iconic. Sankara Nethralaya aims to provide 3000 cataract eye surgeries for those who need it. All the proceeds from this event will go to fulfill this objective.