Indrani Mukherjee sings the morning Raag Todi amongst the lush setting of The Rajbari Bawali near Kolkata. Mukherjee is from the Kirana-Rampur style and thumri in Purab Ang. After training in the family she studied under gurus from Allahabad and Benares, and was selected as a scholar of the ITC Sangeet Research Academy. She currently receives taleem from Arun Bhaduri while pursuing a successful performance career.
The Todi raga family is central to the Hindustani tradition, overflowing with musical ideas not found anywhere else on the planet. Musicologist Rajan Parrikar describes Todi as “the most profound, finespun idea in melodic music...from ecstasy to frolic to pathos to bathos to melancholy - every conceivable human emotion has refracted through the Todi prism.” Many hear an unsettling, existentially anxious mood, while others see it has having “the playfulness of a newborn lying in bed content, smiling and playful”. A Sikh writer considers the raga to “explain things that we may be aware of, but fail to ponder upon”. Suffice to say, it is a versatile, ambiguous raga, to connect with on a deeply personal level.