KATHAKALI

BRADEN CARLSON

HISTORY OF KATHAKALI

The Ramanattam, along with a few other ancient Indian dances, are what the dance Kathakali evolved from. The following quote is what the Kathakali apparently started from."Legend has it that the refusal of the Prince of Calicut to send his Krishnattam troupe to Travancore, this enraged the King of Kottarakkara so much that he decided to compose the Ramanattam". This dance is still very well known and probably always will be just because of the story that the dance it-self tells. Kathakali is still performed at many cultural festivals and or fairs all throughout India.

DID YOU KNOW...

Kathakali actually means "story-play".

CREATION OF KATHAKALI

Kathakali is believed to have been created in the south Indian state called Kerala.

It has a pretty recent origin for being such a well known dance. Kathakali was created somewhere along the lines of the 17th century. It is still popular today and is danced at alot of Indian cultural festivals/fairs. It was not just created, but it was actually evolved off of a few other dances. The dances are the Chakiarkoothu, Koodiyattam, Krishnattam and Ramanattam.

DID YOU KNOW...

Kathakali is also linked to the early martial arts of Kerala.

MAKE-UP

Kathakali make-up is an elaborate process that takes close to 3 hours to prepare. When the artists paint the faces they try to give the actor the most "super-human" look that they can. The make-up is directly applied to the face, that means they don't use masks. The make-up is hand made from various stones and all- natural powders which are mixed with water or coconut oil, then it is ground into a very fine paste. To actually start the face painting process the actor must... First lie flat on a mat, then they bring in an artist and start the whole process of the painting. The most elaborate part of the face is the Chutti (a white disk like feature that runs along both sides of the face, just below the cheeks). The Chutti plays a crucial role in differentiating the characters and their personality and has the following basic classification:- Pacha (green), Kathi (knife), Thadi (beard) and Kari (black). Every thing in this dance has a process that must be done right or not done at all.

KATHAKALI MUSIC

TO LISTEN TO MUSIC FROM ACTUAL KATHAKALI DANCES, CLICK THE LINK BELOW

SOURCES:

USED FOR DANCE THEMES AND MAKE-UP

USED FOR INDIAN MUSIC