Thursday, 23 January 2014

Encounter of a Bizarre Kind

By Sujatha Vijayaraghavan

A rude shock awaited a group of rasikas who went to attend the four o clock senior slot concert in one of the oldest and prominent sabhas in Mylapore. The person at the ticket counter refused to sell tickets as they were sold out even the previous day. A peep into the hall revealed that there were hardly a hundred people in the auditorium with a capacity of over a thousand. The second concert for the evening was a sellout and the sabha refused to let anybody attend the first concert. In fact the sabha issues separate tickets for the two evening slots unlike some other sabhas where one common ticket is issued for both the evening concerts. 
The group pleaded that they were the family members of the musician and wanted to buy the tickets for his concert alone. They requested to be let in and assured that they would leave as soon as the first concert ended. “The family has already come and has gone in. We cannot allow you” jeered the sabha official. At this the leader of the group insisted that they were indeed the family members and demanded to be let in. Still the official refused to sell any tickets to them. The group would not budge. Finally he asked one of them to march behind him. “Others stay at the gate and do not follow me,” he warned. He walked onto the stage where the musicians were already seated on dais and were doing a sound check behind the curtains. The bewildered musician identified his own cousin who was brought in like an impostor trying to sneak in.

Grudgingly the official suffered the group to occupy the seats and departed after warning them once again that they had to leave at the end of the concert. Evidently the few others in the hall were either members or season ticket holders who had come to attend both the concerts.

Discourtesy of this kind is an insult to the musician as well as the rasika and has never been encountered in any of the hundreds of sabhas in the city.

Other sabhas manage such situations either by clearing the hall for each programme or punching the tickets of the audience already seated during the first programme.


  1. This is obviously Mylapore Fine Arts Club, which is notorious for its rude treatment of rasikas and others. V Ramnarayan

  2. I could guess the sabha too