Day Eight: Kathakali in Kovalam, Kerela
We spent an unforgettable day at the beach and the town of Kovalam–walked on the beach, savored unfamiliar tasty dishes, watched a Kathakali performance with a view of Arabian Sea in the background.
In Malayalam language Kovalam means a grove of coconut trees. The place offers picturesque sights of the coconut trees on land and near water. In the early seventies, hippies on their way to Ceylon, came to this town in throngs transforming a casual fishing village into one of the most popular tourist destinations in India.
Kathakali is the classical Malayalam dance-drama noted for its stylized make-up in brilliant basic colors, elaborate costumes, detailed gestures and well-defined body postures. The graceful movements are accompanied by singing, drums and percussions.
This style of dance-drama originated in Kerala in the 17th century. Over the years, it has developed and refined in more than one ways. The innovative make-up, refined gestures, elaborate costumes and headgear, ornate singing and precise drumming mesmerizes its audience.
The themes of the Kathakali are religious in nature. Typically stories from the epics, Mahabharata and Ramayana and the ancient scriptures, Puranas are performed. In recent years new themes such as stories from other religions have been added to the repertoire.