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Art Forms

Kathakali

Kathakali is a harmonious combination of five forms of fine art:

  • Literature (Sahithyam)
  • Music (Sangeetham)
  • Painting (Chithram)
  • Acting (Natyam)
  • Dance (Nritham)

Kathakali is one of the oldest theatre forms in the world. It originated in the area of southwestern India now known as the state of Kerala. Kathakali is a group presentation, in which dancers take various roles in performances traditionally based on themes from Hindu mythology, especially the two epics, the Ramayana and the Mahabharata.Kerala Kathakali Centre is one of the famous theatre in south India Conducting Daily Kathakali and other shows.

Indian Classical Music

Indian classical music is categorized under two genres. These are Hindustani and Carnatic. Broadly speaking, Carnatic music developed in the south of the country, while Hindustani is indigenous to the north.

Carnatic Music

It is the classical music of Southern India. The basic form is a monophonic song with improvised variations. There are 72 basic scales on the octave, and a rich variety of melodic motion. Both melodic and rhythmic structures are varied and compelling. This is one of the world's oldest & richest musical traditions.

Hindustani music

It is based on the raga system. A raga is a melodic scale, consisting of notes from the basic seven known as sa, re, ga, ma pa, dha, and ni. Apart from sa and pa which are constant, the other notes may be in major or minor tone, and this gives rise to innumerable combinations. Ten basic scales or thaats are recognized, and other ragas are considered to have evolved from these. A raga must contain a minimum of five notes.

Three States of Classical Dance

Bharathanatyam

Bharathanatyam is a classical dance form of South India, said to be originated in Thanjavoor of Tamil Nadu. Bharatanatyam It was known as "Daasiyattam" since performed by Devadasies in temples of Tamil Nadu long ago. The name 'Bharatanatyam' is derived from three basic concepts of Bhava, Raga and Thaala. The modern Bharatanatyam was systematically regularized by well known 'Thanjavoor Brothers', Ponnayya, Chinnayya, Sivanandam and Vativelu

Mohiniyattam

Mohiniyattam is a dance form said to have originated in Kerala. It is closely related to Bharathanatyam of Tamil Nadu, Mohiniyattamwhich was originally called 'Dasiyattam'. Originated as the temple dance performed by Devadasis, it portrays feminine love in its myriad forms - carnal, devotional and maternal- with accent more on Lasya and Bhava. In the main items Cholkettu, Padavarnam and Padam, Mudras and facial expressions are more important than the rhythmic steps. Costumes and ornaments of Mohiniyattam have much in common with female characters of Koodiyattam and Kathakali.

Kutchipudi

The art of creating very large pictures Kalamezhuthuon floor, with coloured powders have been in vogue for ages as a ritual art form. It is typically Indian as it is a harmonic blend of Arian, Dravidian and Tribal traditions. As an art form it has found a significant place among our rich spectrum of fine arts. In most other parts of India this art exists as a domestic routine of Hindus, who consider it auspicious to draw certain patterns at the door step and courtyard to welcome a deity into the house. It is called by names like Rangoli, Kolam etc.
Kalamezhuthu is unique form of this art found only in Kerala. Here it is essentially a temple art. The patterns to be drawn and the colours chosen are traditionally stipulated, and the tradition is strictly adhered to.

Kalaripayattu

Kalarippayattu is the only form of the most ancient traditional systems of physical, culture, self-defence and martial techniques still in existence. It is believed to have had its origin in Kerala, the tiny state situated South West of India.

Koodiyattam

Koodiyattam, Sanskrit drama performed in Kerala, India, has been recognised by UNESCO as a Human Heritage Art. Rightly so. It is the oldest existing classical theatre form in the entire world, having originated much before Kathakali and most other theatrical forms. It is considered to be at least 2000 years old. Kulasekhara Varma Cheraman Perumal, an ancient King of Kerala was known as the creator of Koodiyattam in the present form. His book "Aattaprakaram" describes various aspects about how to perform Koodiyattam. Till date this is considered the most authoritative work on the art form. The "grammar" of performance is entirely based on the stipulations of "Natyashasthram" by Bharatha Muni, the most authoritative book on the science of acting

Nangiar Koothu

The female aspect of the Koodiyattom tradition, Nangiarkoothu, the sole domain of female artistes known as Nangiars. Koodiyattom is one of the arts which gave equal importance for women artistes from the earliest times. They act female roles on the stage with men; but more importantly they perform 'Nangiarkoothu' which is a solo dance. One actress presents on the stage by hand gestures, facial expression and body movements, long winded stories relating to Lord Krishna. The basic text is "Sreekrishna Charitham ngiarammakoothu", scripted around 1980, by maestro, Guru P.K.N.Nambiar.

Pavakoothu

Nool Pavakoothu is a stringed puppet play native to Kerala. These plays are generally performed during temple festivals. These puppets remain under the care and custody of a royal family. The puppeteers belong to the Nair community.
The puppets are categorized into two sets. One set comprises of puppets depicting any folk tales, while the other is used for presenting scenes from mythologies and epics like the Ramayana and Mahabharata.