Kerala comes alive with onset of Theyyam seasonJanuary 8th, 2008 - 7:51 pm ICT by admin
By Juhan Samuel
Kochi, Jan 8 (ANI): The northern parts of Kerala have virtually come alive with the onset of the much-awaited Theyyam season that witnesses festivities and ritual dances.
The rituals take centre-stage in houses, sacred groves called Kaavu and in temples in Keralas Kannur and Kasaragod districts during this season.
The Theyyam season began in the Malayalam month of `Thulla’ and will last till the onset of the monsoon season in May.
Thousands of village artists are busy making colourful headgears, costumes, and face designs for the traditional festival.
A senior artist said that the festival is catching up with people in the southern parts of the state as well.
The Theyyam season has already begun. Not only in the northern, but also in the southern Malabar region of Kerala it is being observed,” said Krishnan Mashe, a senior artist.
Tender coconut leaves are used in making costumes and headgears, which hold an important place in the ritual.
Theyyam or daivam (god,) captivates the psyche of the people as performers transform into deities and receive offerings from devotees.
Kaliyattam, as Theyyam is popularly known in the Malabar region, is an age old ritual dance, accompanied by thottams (narrative songs) and drumbeats.
There are nearly 400 Theyyams representing various local deities, and legendary and mythological characters.
A single dance performance comprises of over 15 people, including artists, drummers and singers.
The cost of conducting a Theyyam performance starts from Rs. 35,000 and can go up to Rs. 35 lakh.
The entire cost of the performance is borne by the designated temple committee from the money collected from villagers.
All the expenses to conduct a ritual are borne by the respective temple committee. The villagers pay their designated shares on household basis,” said Kunjappa Nair, a temple Committee Member.
The dance performed in front of deities in temples present a visual feast. (ANI)
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