Lesson 1 – Sarali Varisai

Sarali Varisai (also referred as Swaravali Varisaigal) is the basic exercise and serves as building blocks for beginner students for both carnatic style singing (carnatic vocals) and also for carnatic instruments. There are totally 14 exercises in this and the Sarali varisai notes are also sometimes referred as Sarali varisai lyrics is to be practised in 3 speeds. Once the student has mastered Sarali Varsai they can move to the next set of exercises called Janta Varisai.

Practising Sarali varisai helps students to get a good grasp of melody and rhythm. Sarali varisai is practised in Maya Malava Gowlava Ragam & Adi Talam (8 beats).

This exercise is sung in the raga Mayamalavagowla, which is suited for a beginner to learn both in vocal and instrumental. This raga or scale is practised in Arohana (ascending) and in Avarohana (descending) as shown below.

Arohana : s r1 g3 m1 p d1 n3 s
Avarohana : S n3 d1 p m1 g3 r1 s

It is easy for the beginners to learn Sarali Varisai as the swaras or the notes are placed in balanced distances from one another. Here the purvanga or first half is symmetrical to the uttaranga or second half. This helps a student to render the raga easily. Sarali varisai is set in one octave beginning from Madhya shadja to Tara shadja.

The key feature of Sarali varisais is the sequence in which they have been composed. The exercises in Saralai Varisai helps student to progress step by step, so that the student learns about the interval between the swaras.

Sarali Varisai Notes

  • Sarali Varisai has 14 exercises and it has to be practised in three speeds as given below.
  • First speed – One note per beat.
  • Second speed – Two notes per beat.
  • Third speed – Four notes per beat.

The Sarali Varisai notes are given below:

Māyā MāÍava GowÍa Rāgam

MēÍam 15 Ādhi TāÍam

1 Sa Ri Ga Ma | Pa Da I Ni Ṡa ||

Ṡa Ni Da Pa | Ma Ga | Ri Sa ||












2 S R S R | S R | G M ||

S R G M | P D | N ||

N N | N | D P ||

N D P | M G | R S ||












3 S R G S | R G | S R ||

S R G M | P D | N ||

N D | N D | N ||

N D P | M G | R S ||












4 S R G M | S R | G M ||

S R G M | P D | N ||

N D P | N | D P ||

N D P | M G | R S ||












5 S R G M | P , | S R ||

S R G M | P D | N ||

N D P | M , | N ||

N D P | M G | R S ||












6 S R G M | P D | S R ||

S R G M | P D | N ||

N D P | M G | N ||

N D P | M G | R S ||












7 S R G M | P D | N , ||

S R G M | P D | N ||

N D P | M G | R , ||

N D P | M G | R S ||












8 S R G M | P M | G R ||

S R G M | P D | N ||

N D P | M P | D N ||

N D P | M G | R S ||












9 S R G M | P M | D P ||

S R G M | P D | N ||

N D P | M P | G M ||

N D P | M G | R S ||












10 S R G M | P , | G M ||

P , , , | P , | , , ||

G M P D | N D | P M ||

G M P G | M G | R S ||












11 , N D | N , | D P ||

D , P M | P , | P , ||

G M P D | N D | P M ||

G M P G | M G | R S ||












12 N D | N N | D P ||

D D P M | P , | P , ||

G M P D | N D | P M ||

G M P G | M G | R S ||












13 S R G R | G , | G M ||

P M P , | D P | D , ||

M P D P | D N | D P ||

M P D P | M G | R S ||












14 S R G M | P , | P , ||

D D P , | M M | P , ||

D N , | N | D P ||

N D P | M G | R S ||

After becoming familiar with Sarali varisai in the raga Mayamalavagowla, the student can practice the same in different ragas like Shankarabharana or Kharaharapriya. But dont jump to other ragas without mastering Sarali varisai in Mayamalavagowla ragam.

After mastering Sarali Varisai in 3 speeds, the student can move on to the next set of exercises – Janta Varisai. Janta means two and therefore in Janta Varisai the notes come in a pair.

You can also learn through live one-to-one tutoring with our friendly tutors. For more details visit our Carnatic singing classes

FAQs

What is Sarali Varisai?

Sarali varisai is the first exercise for anyone who wants to learn Carnatic music in a structured way. It has 14 exercises and each exercise has to be practiced in 3 speeds.

How long does it take to learn Sarali Varisai?

Assuming a student puts in about 45- 60 minutes/ day, one should be able to master in 3-4 months time frame. 

What comes after Sarali Varisai?

After Sarali Varisai the student can practise Janta Varisai.

Check the following famous carnatic songs of all time:

  1. Shyamale Meenakshi – Click here.
  2. Maha Ganapatim – Click here
  3. Chinnachiru Kiliye – Click here
  4. Maadu Meikum Kanne – Click here
  5. Ekadantaya Vakratundaya – Click here
  6. Brahmam Okate – Click here
  7. Vathapi Ganapathim – Click here

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