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Kathakali Durable Link to this entry

© Mallikarjuna.D.G.

Kathakali, literally meaning ‘Story-play’, is a dance drama originated in the 17th century in Kerala.

© Mallikarjuna.D.G.

The themes of the Kathakali are religious in nature. They typically deal with the Mahabharatha, Ramayana and the ancient scriptures known as the Puranas. This is performed in a text which is generally Sanskritised Malayalam.

© Mallikarjuna.D.G.

The actors rely very heavily on hand gesture to convey the story. These hand gestures known as mudra, are common throughout much of classical Indian dance.

© Mallikarjuna.D.G.

The communication among the characters and to the audience, is through an intricate language of hand gestures, used in combination with facial expressions and body movements.

© Mallikarjuna.D.G.


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