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Alankars

ABOUT ALANKARS

  • Practising Alankars everyday is the best way to become proficient in playing Bansuri or for that matter, any other instrument. 
  • Alankars are the logical patterns of Swars which should be played along with Taal (beats). 
  • You can take help of a Tabla player to assist you, or a Tanpura (actual, electronic or App based) or a Metronome which can be downloaded from the internet. 
  • There is no hard and fast rule to play Alankars. Only thing, you have to practice the notes in both Aaroh and Avroh. 
  • Now, the question is what are Aaroh and Avroh? So, playing notes in ascending order (from left to right or from bottom to top) is Aaroh and in descending order (from right to left or from top to bottom) is Avroh. 
  • With basic understanding, you can create a number of Alankars on your own.

THUMB RULES

  1. Equal number of Swars (notes) in both Aroh and Avroh
  2. Avroh should end on the Swar with which Aroh began
  3. The pattern must be logical, like, the gaps between notes should be alike in each set   

1  |  2  |  3  |  4  |  5  |  6  |  7

S | R | G  | M  | P  | D  | N

ALANKARS FOR PRACTICE

Follow the Alankars daily as arranged below.  Practice these for at least 30 minutes daily.  While playing these on your Flute and other instruments, recite the names of the Swars in mind so that you remember their sound. Random playing of notes will not help you grow in your music.  Once you understand the logic of setting patterns for Alankars, you can create thousands of your own Alankars.

i) (Starting note : Shadaj; End note : Shadaj)

AROH : S | R | G | M | P | D | N | S’…

AVROH : S’ | N | D | P | M | G | R | S…


ii) (Starting note : Shuddh Re; End note : Shuddh Re)

AROH : R | G | M | P | D | N | S’ | R’…

AVROH : R’ | S’ | N | D | P | M | G | R…


iii) : Make your own

AROH : (Start with any Note) 

AVROH : (End with the same Note) 


In a two notes per beat pattern, if you take note no.1 as (say, Sa) and note no.3 as (Ga) in your first set (1,3), then second set should be (2,4) as note no.2 as (Re) and note no.4 as (Ma), third set (3,5) should be note no.3 as (Ga) and note no.5 as (Pa), and so on…

i) Pattern: (1,2) | (2,3) …

AROH : SR | RG | GM | MP | PD | DN | NS’…

AVROH : S’N | ND | DP | PM | MG | GR | RS…


ii) Pattern: (1,3) | (2,4) …

AROH :  SG | RM | GP | MD | PN | DS’ | NR’ | S’G’…

AVROH : G’S’ | R’N | S’D | NP | DM | PG | MR | GS…


iii) Pattern: (3,7) | (4,1) …

AROH :  G,N | MS | PR | DG | NM | S’P | R’D | G’N…

AVROH : NG’ | DR | PS’ | MN | GD | RP | SM | ,NG…


iv) : Make your own

AROH : (Start with any two Notes) 

AVROH : (End with the same two Notes in reverse) 


In a three notes per beat pattern, if you take first set as Sa Ga Pa (1-3-5) which is Sa(1), Ga (3) and Pa (5), then second set should be (2-4-6) like, Re Ma Da and third set should be (3,5,7) like Ga Pa Ni and so on…

i) (Pattern: 123 | 234 …)

AROH : SRG | RGM | GMP | MPD | PDN | DNS’…

AVROH : S’ND | NDP | DPM | PMG | MGR | GRS…


ii) (Pattern: 135 | 246 …)

AROH :  SGP | RMD | GPN | MDS’…

AVROH : S’DM | NPG | DMR | PGS…


iii) (Pattern: 765 | 176…)

AROH :  ,N,D,P | S,N,D | RS,N | GRS | MGR | PMG | DPM | NDP…

AVROH : PDN | MPD | GMP | RGM | SRG | ,NSR | ,D,NS | ,P,D,N…


iv) : Make your own

AROH : (Start with any three Notes. Note down the pattern.) 

AVROH : (End with the same three Notes in reverse) 


i) Pattern: (1,2,3,4) | (2,3,4,5) …

AROH : SRGM | RGMP | GMPD | MPDN | PDNS’…

AVROH : S’NDP | NDPM | DPMG | PMGR | MGRS…


ii) Pattern: (1,3,5,7) | (2,4,6,1) …

AROH :  SGPN | RMDS’ | GPNR’ | MDS’G’ | PNR’M’

AVROH : M’R’NP | G’S’DM | R’NPG | S’DMR | NPGS…


iii) Pattern: (5,7,1,2) | (6,1,3,4) …

AROH :  ,P,NSR | ,DSRG | ,NRGM | SGMP…

AVROH : PMGS | MGR,N | GRS,D | RS,N,P…


iv) : Make your own

AROH : (Start with any four Notes) 

AVROH : (End with the same four Notes in reverse) 


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How to read SARGAM notations

  • CAPITAL LETTERS = Shuddh Swars (Pure Notes)
  • small letters = Komal Swars (Flat Notes)
  • A Note with # [hash] = Tivra Swar 
  • Letter/Alphabet ONLY = Medium Pitch/Normal blow on flute
  • Letter/Alphabet PRECEDED BY a ” . ” [full stop] or  a ” , ” [comma] = Low Pitch/Softer blow on flute
  • Letter/Alphabet FOLLOWED BY a ‘ [single quote] = High Pitch/harder blow on flute
  • Notes in { } = “murki” or “khatka” which have to be played very fast without any pause
  • A Note in ( ) = “kann swar” has to be just touched before moving on to the next note
  • A “~” between two Notes = “Meend”. That is, you have to glide from one note to another slowly to produce that wavy effect.
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