Visited Kerala kathakali centre in fort Kochi recently and thought of sharing about “Kathakali” (one of the major form of indian classical dance) and the dedication shown by the artist towards this genre of art.
Katha is denoting story and Kali means play.So, Kathakali is the story play genre of art where artist apply colourful make-ups, wearing face masks to perform a specific part of the story taken from hindu epics/puranas.
In Kerala kathakali centre, we first see how artist apply the make-ups and getting ready for the performance. All the colours used for make-up are taken from natural substances and herbs. For example, rice flour and lime is used creating white color. Red and yellow color from powdering stones like Chaayilyam & Manayola. The below pictures shows how the artist apply these colours to their faces
The picture below shows the artist being enlightened and the happiness in his face once the full make-up is completed. On an average, it takes 2 to 3 hrs for the make-up and it varies based on the character that they try to portray.
The below picture depicts the artist who performs several facial expressions (anger, love, vengence etc) to the audience. This prepares the audience to witness the actual performance and the different facial expressions that will be performed during the play
Before the play starts, the artist himself cleans the stage, lights lamp and prepares the stage for performance. Apart from the artist who perform dance, there are artist who play mirudhangam and a singer cum narrator who narrate the story by singing. The below picture depicts the same and looks majestic when we see the artist performing the play in the stage
There was a short interruption to the electricity in the middle of the play. But there was no disturbance to the performance as all the artist continued to perform their part and the singer increased his volume to balance the volume till there was no electricity. This shows 100% dedication to the art by the artists.
If you are lover of art/dance performance, please plan to watch this great performance by kathakali artist in kerala kathakali centre, kochi