Carnatic music theory- sangeetham

Carnatic music theory- sangeetham

Geetham vaadyam tathaa nruthyam
Thrayam sangeetha muchyathe
(sangeetha rathnakaram)

The above sloka defines SANGEETHAM as the combination of GEETHAM (Song), VAADYAM (Instrument) and NRUTHYAM (Dance). Here GEETHAM means GAATHRA Music.

The Geetham is used only instead of Vocal Music. But it should not be treated as the music composed with special features of Geetham in now-a-days (modern music). The music played on instruments is called instrumental music. With the addition of Vocal music and instrumental music the art of dance has gained prevalence in society with the aid of this to music and instruments. Do not let dancing show independence without the help of Vocal and Instrumental Music. Otherwise Dance will be treated only as facial expression. (monoaction). Likewise, the Vocal, Instrument and dance music together contributed Naada which is important to Music. That naadam created Sruthi, Sruthi created saptha swaras, that swaras created more raagaas. Hence Naadam-sruthi-swara His also called music. The combination or vocal music, instrumental music and dance music is called THOURYATHRIKAM.

Gandharvam refers to Sangeetham(music). Its derived from Gandharva gaanam, the music performed in heavens by Gandharvaas.

Bharatham : Gandharvam (sangeetham) was brought to Earth (Bhoolokha) by Barathamuni. So the word Bharatham is attributed to music. In that, “Bha” tands for ‘Bhava”, “Ra” stands for “Raaga” and “Tha” stands for “Thaala”. These three are the most important aspects of our music.
During the period of Bharatha and his before period also music had been called as “Gandharvam”. Gandharva vedam had been selected as sub vedam of Sama vedam. Bharatham had given the following definition for gandharvam of Natya shasthram.

Gaandharva miti vigneyam

As per Bharatha muni, gandharva shaastra is a mixer of swara thaala padam. Swara means dhatu portion, padam means maathu or saahithya (literature) portion.
The music is also termed as the blended of saahithyas with the music formed with the music formed with swaras and permitted and governed by thaalas. Further, the blend of swara-pada-thaala as Gandharvam and is also called as music.

Raaga swarascha thaalascha
Thribhi sangeetha muchyathe

The extract from the text, it speaks that the composition of raga, swara and thaala conforms and defines the meaning of music.


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  • Sathwik raman , June 24, 2017 @ 1:09 pm

    Very nice! Proud of u aunty

  • VANISREE , June 24, 2017 @ 7:49 pm

    Very useful information…pl upload many more like this

  • Rajasree , June 25, 2017 @ 3:53 am

    Very nice. Pls upload like this.

  • Vaishnavi Dilipan , June 25, 2017 @ 9:24 pm

    Hello madam thanks for posting this article because I read it today and have learned many more things about music

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