String Quartet on raaga darbaari
With Pandit Jasraj (Hindustani vocal) and the the famous ensemble “Quatuor Tana“.
Composition by Daniel Schell
Daniel Schell Pandit Jasraj
Tana string quartet
In 1991, Pandit Jasraj recorded ‘baavari banaaya ke gaye’ in raaga darbaari. This recording became an historical version of this famous night raga.
The piece is in two parts:
1 Ektal vilambit (slow). The text ‘Eri birari’ is by the famous poet Adarang . Sadarang (1670-1748) and his nephew Adarang changed the khyal style of Hindustani Music. They served at the court of Mughal Emperor Muhammad Shak (ruled 1719-1748).
2 Tintal drut (fast) . the text ‘baavari banaaya ke gaye’ the text is by Pandit Jasraj.
Music of both pieces is by Pandit Jasraj.
The original performance can be heard on the CD Pandit Jasraj, Collection Maestro’s Choice, published by Music Today, New Delhi (1991)
One version of this famous piece can be seen here: http://youtu.be/B3zeI2793TA
(Although the composition is the same, Daniel Schell is not working on this version only, but also on others)
Daniel Schell, who met, learned from and works with Pandit Jasraj since many years, had the idea of achieving the notation of the vocal line of Jasraj and use it as the conducting (baritone) line of a musical ensemble. Finally Daniel decided to work it out for a string quartet. The project was initially proposed to David Harrington of Kronos Quartet who was interessed, however declined because a too busy schedule in 2013. Daniel has now agreed to work with the great Tana String Quartet, under the leading of violinist Antoine Maisonhaute.
An extraordinary event would be to join both artists on stage. Pandit Jasraj would interpret the original composition. Quatuor Tana would then perform the composition by Daniel Schell. They would then perform together. Of course, both performances are independent, and the string quartet can be executed as a standalone piece. However the live performance of both, would be a remarquable event.
Festival Europalia India 2013
The theme of the Europalia Festival 2013 is India. It will happen in Brussels, October 2013 to January 2014. The project has been presented to the board and accepted. The premiere will happen on January 12 at Bozar Brussels.
Pandit Jasraj, Hindustani vocalist. One of the most remarquable and well known vocalist of the North Indian Hindustani music.
Quatuor Tana is one of today’s most famous performing ensemble for contemporary music. They have created pieces from Cendo, Robin and Bedrossian. Besides their important creation activity they also have such composers as Riley, Scelsi, Harvey, Debussy, Janacek, Chostakovitch in their repertoire.
Antoine Maisonhaute v1 , Chikako Hosoda v2, Maxime Desert alto, Jeanne Maisonhaute cello.
http://www.tanastringquartet.be/ https://soundcloud.com/quatuortana http://www.youtube.com/user/tanaquatuor
Daniel Schell: Composer and performer. Beside his works of Opera, instrumental and vocal music, Daniel has studied in depth Indian classical. He has accompanied many Indian artists, and written several books as ‘Practice of Indian Music’, ‘The Bansuri’, The Tabla’ . He is
preparing a ‘Jasraj Songbook’ with Pandit Jasraj. The transcriptions were made with the help of Ankita Joshi, under the guidance of her guru Jasraji himself.
More on the piece:
In the recording and the performance, Jasraj always introduces a composition by a mantra, a religious invocation. In this case it is:
om shrii ananta hari narayana
mangalaam bhagawan vishnu
mangalaam garudad dhwajah
mangalay tanu hari
Slow vilambit ektal part (12 beat)
Text of the poem by Adarang:
Shtaayi: eri birari jako mana chahe
so na chahe aapako
Antaraa: jaro eso sona jaso kana jotute
priita kari kachu baira basani
adaranga aise manasa so jiya dariye
The lady is telling her friend: Whom I love, he does not love me
No use of such gold, which will cut your ear
I have loved him, now I have made him an ennemy
Adarang (the poet) says : keep distance from such a person
who does not know the meaning of love.
Fast part in rhythmic cycle tintaala (16 beat)
Text of the poem by Jasraj:
Shtaayi: baavarii banaayake gaye
piyaravaa more na janu kita
Antaraa: kina bairana aan basii hai
jiyaraa me unake na janu kita
He made me crazy and he left
And I don’t know where he is
Some other lady has entered in his life and took place
Now I don’t know what is in his mind
Raaga darbaaris a legendary raaga, sung at night, with an expression of depth. It is therefore usually performed by bass voices or low-pitched wind or string instruments.
Based on the aeolian (asawari) scale, this raga has three flats
Do re mib fa sol lab tib do’
S R g M P d n S’ (where capital letters are for natural (shuddh) pitches and small for flatted (komal)
Ascending : S R g M P d n S’
Descending: S’ (n_)d n P (M_)g M R S
When performing the phrase S R g (Do re mib) , the g (mib) is sung low pitched on a very characteristic way.
The g (mib) is most often taken from the M (fa) with a continuous meend (glissando). Furthermore, there is a slow andolaan (slow vibrato) between M (fa) and g. (mib)
The phrase S’ n d P should never be sung, and similarly S’ n d. However Jasraj uses quite often S’ (n_)d with the d ornamented by the n, again with a continuous meend (glissando).going from n to d.
Consequently the descending scale, in slow tempo, could be rewritten
S’ (ornament n gliss)d n P (ornament M gliss) g M (slow vibrato MgMgMg) R S
In short: S’ (n_)d n P (M_) g M (~g~M~g) R S
Darbaari is very difficult raga to sing because of the zigzag-s in the descending scale the expression of the low g, and in general the dark colour which has to be rendered. For his reason, it is avoided by beginning artists, and even confirmed artists fear to perform it. Jasraj has delivered an historical performance of this raga in his baavari. Recording.
Notes by Daniel Schell
Transcriptions made with the kind help of Ankita Joshi.
Many thanks to all who helped for this project: Pandit Jasraj and family, Vimla Sippy, Ankita Joshi, Bozar Tony van der Eecken and Stefaan Guilliams, Quatuor Tana Antoine Maisonhaute.