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Viswa lives in my memory!

Dr. T Viswanathan

(13 August 1927 – 10 September 2002)

As long as Lord Ganesha is worshiped in Indian culture, Dr. T. Viswanathan (Viswa), the world renowned flautist, lives! He is beyond ownership, but music owns him and so his musical tradition. His divine musical sensibilities sing through this song Hastivadanaya of Mudduswami Dikshitar in the raga Navaroj set to Misra Capu tala. I have heard him many times and played this composition with him a few times. But the memory of association of Hastivadanaya with Viswa is indelible. While Lord Ganesha and fast-paced Hamsadhvani compositions seem to be in tune with each other, this beautifully slow-paced composition marks a contrast conjuring up in our minds a scene of divine majestic dance of Lord Ganesha enjoying the movement of His feet.

Here is a rendition of Hastivadanaya in the Patantara of Dr. T. Viswanathan sung by me and played on the vina by my disciples Thenuga and Mathuriga.

Wesleyan University in the 70s

Amongst those pictured are Dr. T Viswanathan, Dr. Karaikudi S. Subramanian, Dr. David Reck, Dr. Matthew Alleen and Dr. Jody Cormack.


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