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Article: Vivadi swara-s

 
By Haresh Bakshi
 
  A note, that is not one of the notes that comprise a raga, is vivadi. It is also called "varjya" (to be excluded), or, "varjita" (excluded).

For example, the notes S-R-G-P-D comprise the raga Bhupali. So the excluded notes, 'm' and 'N', are vivadi notes.

It is the vivadi notes that give rise to the three 'jati-s' (types) of raga-s, namely 'audava', comprising 5 notes; 'shadava', comprising 6 notes; and 'sampurna', comprising 7 notes.

The concept of vivaditaa (exclusion) is more elaborate than is generally recognized. In this connection, we can distinguish the following types of excluded notes:

1. Those notes which are dissonant with the aesthetics of a raga. For example, Ma in Bhupali.

2. Those notes which are optional to a raga. For example komal Ni Tilak Kamod.

3. Those notes which are instinctively included in a raga, though known to be technically excluded. For example Ni in Bhupali, Ga in Kedar.

4. Those notes which are conventionally included. For example, komal Ni in Bhairava.

5. Those notes which are included for embellishment. For example, notes in Bhairavi, Pahadi, Piloo etc.

6. Those notes which the masters include, rarely, in a raga. For example, komal Ni: Salamat Ali Khan's dhamAr in the raga hameer -- see http://www.sawf.org/audio/hameer/salamat.ram. Also, Ustad Faiyyaz Khan's application of komal Ni in the raga maru Bihag -- see http://www.sawf.org/audio/marubihag/faiyyazkhan.ram

There will be more, as we go along.

Vivadi notes, thus, contribute substantially to the aesthetics of a raga -- whether by their presence, or by their absence. I am in the process of coining Sanskrit words like suvivaadii/antargata, durvivaadii/dissonant, anuvivaadii/kaamya/aichhika etc., to represent these shades and nuances in the concept of vivaditva (or, vivaditaa)

 

 

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