Veena - An Introduction

Veena is an ancient string instrument whose origins according to mythology, lies in the Vedas. It is one of the primary instruments from which the Sitar came into being. As the Mridangam is the essential part of the rhythmic portion of Carnatic music, the Veena is as important for the melodic portion. In this course, Gayathri V introduces the instrument and in a step by step manner and teaches us about it's various facets and musical patterns.

Instructor: Gayathri V

Start Course
Enrolled Students

10

Suggested Time

4 weeks

Pricing

 600

Language

English

Rating

-

Unit 1: Introduction

Background 13 min

Veena has been a part of India's musical journey through ancient times and originally referred to any instrument that had strings. It's design was influenced by the shape of the spinal column which is why initially it had 24 strings. There are now many more variants in existence such as the  northern India version called the Saraswati Veena. Gayathri V has been playing the Veena form a tender age and was considered a child prodigy. Winner of numerous awards, her illustrious career has seen her perform with various carnatic music stalwarts.
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Veena Initiation 15 min

Due to it's size, the veena has numerous parts and modalities that need a thorough understanding. In this chapter the various types of veena are discussed along with it's different parts, the sitting posture which guarantees optimum performance while playing and finally the tuning to set you on course to learning the veena.
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Unit 2: Veena Techniques

Handling & Plucking 7 min

Essential to understanding the veena is the handling of it as the size may seem daunting initially. The proper hand placement to form a comfortable position while playing is shown together with the plucking technique where all fingers of the dominant hand are used at various times. The other hand handles the frets in oderd to strike the right key.
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Unit 3: Musicology

Graded Exercises 33 min

Sarlai Varsai are the graded exercises of the 7 swaras played to a particular talam, in this case Adi talam. Played at different speeds as you progress, various gamkas can also be introduced into the varsai as move further, This ornamentation helps you incorporate features to better your technique. Due to veena's nature of mimicking the human voice, the janta varsai which is primarily sung, is also played here.
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Gamkas & Three Octaves 10 min

Gamaka means osccillatio and refers to the ornamentation used to enhance a performance. It can be any graceful oscillation of a swara or a group of swaras that lends emphasis to any raga. The advanced technique of practicing the Sarlai Varsai in the third speed to hone your skills for further progrees is the three octaves.
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Unit 4: Performance

Concert Pattern 10 min

A short concert pattern is performed with the mridangam as the rhythmical instrument. A kriti in the raga Jaganmohini set to rupak tala which is originally composed by Shri Thyagaraja is presented here.
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