Rag Desh Section B (all 3 works)

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Structure

Mhara (voice) | Anoushka Shankar | Wertheimer & Gorn

Structure:

  • Two main sections - alap and bhajan

  • Alap starts with a short introduction on the sarangi

  • Three main sections - Alap, Gat 1 and Gat 2

  • 3 movements - Alap, Gat 1 and Gat 2
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Melody

Mhara (voice) | Anoushka Shankar | Wertheimer & Gorn

Melody:

  • Based on the notes of Rag Desh

  • The Melody is ornamented with much melisma and meend

  • Sitar explores the notes of the rag in the Alap section

  • Some decoration, as well as flourishes and ornaments

  • Bansuri explores the notes of the rag in fragments

  • In Gat 1 the Bansuri has a lyrical, unaccompanied melody to start

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Rhythm, Metre and Tempo

Mhara (voice) Anoushka Shankar Wertheimer & Gorn

Rhythm, Metre and Tempo:

  • Alap section is slow and unmetred

  • Alap section has free, improvised rhythms

  • Alap section is slow and unmetred

  • During the Gat sections the tabla provides a steady rhythmic accompaniment

  • Alap section is slow and unmetred with free, improvised rhythms

  • The Bansuri and tabla rhythms are often syncopated

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Dynamics

Mhara (voice) Anoushka Shankar Wertheimer & Gorn

Dynamics:

  • There is a crescendo as the instruments and vocals enter

  • Dynamics increase when the tabla and other percussion enter for the bhajan

  • Dynamic range is fairly constant throughout the piece

  • A crescendo from mf to f

  • The Alap section is quiet throughout

  • Alap section has subtle shades of Crescendo and Diminuendo

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Instrumentation

Mhara (voice) Anoushka Shankar Wertheimer & Gorn

Instrumentation:

  • Voice, Sarangi, Sarod, Pakhawj, Cymbals and Tabla

  • Soloist and percussion instruments

  • Only sitar and tabla are used

  • Sitar provides the melody, drone and improvisation and table provides the rhythm

  • Bansuri is the melody instrument

  • Tabla is the rhythmic instrument only used in the Gat sections

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Harmony and Tonality

Mhara (voice) Anoushka Shankar Wertheimer & Gorn

Harmony and Tonality:

  • The Piece has no key or harmony

  • Tonality is established by the raga

  • The piece has no key or harmony but drone notes are used on the sitar to aid tuning

  • Tonality is established by the raga

  • The Piece has no key or harmony

  • Tonality is established by the raga

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Texture

Mhara (voice) Anoushka Shankar Wertheimer & Gorn

Texture:

  • Texture is thin at the beginning

  • As more instruments join the texture thickens

  • Piece starts with an unaccompanied sitar

  • Texture thickens with the entry of the tabla

  • Fairly thin throughout
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