Desired Melody
Filmfest 2007

The camera captured the ambience of temples with their panorama of rituals and spectacles, their heady pageantry and nagaswaram-tavil fanfare. The din of the streets and milling humanity are juxtaposed with the grandeur of this resplendent music. And at certain moments, even on the flat screen, the desired melodies did reach the deep silence within, as when a tasselled umbrella, held above a deity in a temple procession, passes into the night. Two sequences stood out for their evocativeness: Sanjay learning from nagaswaram vidwan Sembonnarkoil S.R.D.Vaidyanathan, whose wrinkled visage produces ripe music of a kind that we thought had vanished forever. Sanjay’s body language here fascinates, whether listening to a love lyric, or a martial mallari. The camera also frames Sanjay the father, telling bedtime stories to his children. We see the dynamism and drama of his music reflected in this intimate narrative moment. Gowri Ramnarayan, The Hindu, online edition, 17-11-2006

With: Sanjay Subramaniam, Anand Samy

tags: Documentary


Director: Prasanna Ramaswamy