Kutiyattam Dance is one of the popular dances of Kerala. There are a number of arts and crafts practiced in Kerala, including dance, martial arts, and ritual arts. The dance forms of Kerala bear the legacy of the traditional art and craft of Kerala.One of the classical performing arts of Kerala, Kutiyattam dance of Kerala is worth a watch on your tour to Kerala. Kutiyattam was once considered the theater of the elite classes, due to its extremely complex acting styles and the difficult grammar of Sanskrit, which limited its audience to the upper castes of society. These heavily stylized movements and linguistics (for which Kutiyattam is regarded as the most structured form of drama in history) have their roots in ancient Indian religious and cultural history.This is a playhouse attached to temples. Kuttu proper involves solo storytelling, Kutiyattam i.e. `collective enactment`, the full-fledged staging. A reference to Kutiyattam in Cilappatikaram, the famous Tamil poem dated between the second century BC and fifth century AD, provides valid evidence that it came into existence about 2000 years ago. Certainly by the seventh century it had become quite popular. Two kings of the Chera dynasty in the tenth century, namely Kulasekhara Perumal and Cheraman Perumal, actively patronized its development.

The performance of Kutiyattam dance is based on Sanskrit texts. A single act of Kutiyattam play may be staged for 10 to 15 days, lasting 2-3 hours each day.

Kutiyattam dance is a spectacular combination of intricate gesture language, chanting, inflated expressions of the face and eyes, elaborate headdresses and a gaudy make-up. Mizhavu drums, small cymbals, idakka drum, wind instrument kuzhal, and conch shell are used to provide music for the play.Men i.e. Chakkiyars and women i.e. Nangiyars act Kutiyattam, in kuttamodam theatres constructed in accordance with the prescriptions set down by the Natyasastra.




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