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Learn Carnatic Flute | Intermediate Level | Varnams Volume 9


Varṇam is a kind of composition within the Carnatic music system consisting of quick metric items which encapsulate the primary options (patterns of notes) of a raga.Varnams seize the raga bhavam, ranjaka prayogas visesha sancharas, and so forth. Dhatu and Janta prayogas (phrase utilization) are often a part of a Varnam. Understanding of those elements is essential to growing manodharma sangeetham (ie., improvisation elements of Carnatic music reminiscent of raga aalapana, swara kalpana, neraval and so forth)

Identified for his or her complicated construction, varnams are a basic type in Carnatic music.All varnams encompass lyrics,in addition to swara passages, together with a pallavi, an anupallavi, muktaayi swaras, a charanam, and chittaswaras. There are several types of varnams, reminiscent of taana varnam, pada varnam, daru varnam and ragamalika varnam. Additionally they come totally different taalams (beat cycles). Although the preferred varnams are in Aadi and Ata taalas, there are a variety of varnams in different talas as effectively (e.g., jampa tala, triputa tala, matya talam, roopaka talam, and so forth).

Thought-about as most likely essentially the most complicated type in Carnatic music, varnams play a major function in Carnatic music. A varnam is historically carried out as a gap merchandise by musicians in Carnatic music concert events to behave as warm-up for the musicians,or as a centre principal piece in Bharatanatyam dance concert events. As a basis to Carnatic music,varnams are additionally practised as vocal workouts by performers of Carnatic music, to assist develop voice tradition, and preserve correct pitch and management of rhythm. The melodic patterns in a varnam are thought-about to be attribute patterns of a selected raga.

Varieties of varnams

Named for its tanam-like rhythmic qualities, tana varnams solely have lyrics for the pallavi, anupallavi and charanam.

With rhythmic parts like a padam, pada varnams are usually sung to accompany South Indian classical dance, together with bharatanatyam.Not like the tana varnam which solely has lyrics for the pallavi, anupallavi and charanam and swaras for the remainder of the sections a pada varnam even have lyrics that correspond to the muktaayi and chitta swaras of the varnam, so usually, pada varnams comprise extra lyrical content material than a tana varnam.The swaras in this sort of varnam are appropriate for intricate footwork.Padajathi varnams are merely pada varnams that additionally comprise jatis in it, making it once more extra appropriate for South Indian classical dance.

Contents of a varnam

The identify “varnam” (that means “letter”) was probably given to this type of track because of the prevalence of swara letters in this sort of composition.

Lyrical content material of varnams are generally both devotional or amorous.

The varnam is subdivided into a number of sections:

  • Pallavi: The primary part of the Varnam, sung with lyrics or sahitya.

  • Anupallavi: A form of recapitulation, sung with lyrics or sahitya additionally.

  • Muktaayi: Sung utterly with syllables—or swaras — (like s (sa) r (Ri) g(ga) m(ma) p (pa) d(da) n(ni) (sa)(That is the upper model of the traditional one). In Pada Varnas it is named Muktaayi Swara-Sahitya.

  • Charanam: Sung with lyrics

  • Chitta Swara or Ettugadda Swaram: Sung utterly with syllables. In a Pada varnam, there are lyrics which correspond to the Charanam swaras. The swaras happen in a number of teams or stanzas.

  • Anubandham: epilogue to the Varnam. Some varnams have this extra half that follows the charanam and chitta(Ettugadda) swaras, that’s sung with lyrics or sahitya thus main again to the muktaayi(Chitta) swara or the primary pallavi line itself. It’s discovered extra typically with very outdated Varnams and it’s much less prevalent within the newer varnams. In fashionable instances, some outdated varnams are even sung partially, by omitting the anubandham half. Probably the most classical instance of that is the Viribhoni varnam in Bhairavi, which is sung after omitting one in every of its chitta swaras and the anubandham.

Varnams are historically rendered in a format that consists of Pallavi, Anupallavi and Chitta Swaram (Mukthayi Swaram) being sung first in a comparatively gradual tempo and repeated instantly after in double the velocity. The remainder of the composition (Charanam onwards) is sung in a ‘madhyama kala’ or roughly 1.5 instances the velocity used at first. Every swara passage is sung, adopted by the lyrics of the charanam. Some performers don’t comply with this although, preferring to sing your entire composition in ‘madhyama kala’ or comparatively quick tempo.

Varnams are usually sung in two kinds of talas, or metric methods, Adi Tala (8 beat cycle) and Ata Tala (14 beat cycle), the place Ata Tala varnams are usually extra sophisticated and superior. In many of the Adi Tala Varnams the tala is positioned within the 2 kalai model. So due to this fact every beat and finger rely is positioned twice.

Well-known varnams

Adi Tala Varnams embody :

  • “Sami Ninne” in Shree ragam composed by Karur Devudu Iyer in Telugu

  • “Ninnukori” in Mohanam ragam by Poochi Srinivasa Iyengar in Telugu

  • “Evvari Bodhana” in Abhogi ragam by Patnam Subramania Iyer in Telugu

  • “Period Naapai” in Todi raagam by Patnam Subramania Iyer in Telugu

  • “Valachi Vacchi” in Navaraagamalika in Telugu (9 ragas, much like Ragamalika which accurately interprets to a garland of ragams

Ata Tala Varnams embody:

  • “Viriboni” in Bhairavi ragam by Pacchimiriam Adiyappa in Telugu

  • “Nera Nammiti” in Kaanada raagam by Poochi Srinivasa Iyengar in Telugu

  • “Chalamela” in Sankarabharanam by Swati Tirunal in Telugu

The Arabhi ragam varnam is meant to be the one longest piece with jantai and dhattu prayogas.

The “Mathe Malayadhwaja” by Harikesanalloor Mutthiah Bhasgavatar is a singular Varnam as a result of the Chitta swara has two several types of saahitya organized in accordance with it. The primary is a rhythmic poetry describing the king and has the Raaja mudra and the second is a lilting Solkattu swara which may be very properly embodied in expression by bharatanatyam dancers



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