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Theatre: A KUTIYATTAM PERFORMANCE

Surpanakhankam from Saktibhadra’s Ascharyachudamani

Performances by Nepathaya, Kerala led by Margi Madhu Chakyar and Dr. Indu G.

Introduction by Prof. David Shulman

A complete performance of Kutiyattam each evening at 6:30 pm. Details of each evening’s episode with simultaneous explanatory slide projection; and cast details will be distributed before the performance

 One of the oldest forms of theatre in India, the last living tradition of Sanskrit drama in performance. Kutiyattam has miraculously survived in Kerala, first as a temple art, but today it is performed on the secular stage as well.

Kutiyattam has a spectacular theatrical language which unfolds multiple layers of meaning of the text, conveyed through gestures, powerful facial expressions, and an elaborate, slowly evolving mode of enactment. In 2001, UNESCO proclaimed Kutiyattam as a ‘Masterpiece of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity’.

Kutiyattam is a tradition fighting for its life, especially for the opportunity to perform full-scale, unabridged masterpieces spread out over several nights. Only such complete performances can convey the deep expressive force of these magnificent texts, which slowly build up to an unimaginable climax on the final night.

This performance is based on Aranyakanda of the Ramayana. It depicts Surpanakhankam, the second act of Saktibhadra’s Sanskrit play Ascharyachudamani

(Collaboration: Sahapedia; Parekh Institute of Indian Thought, CSDS; and Seher)

Date: 16th-21st August, 2018

Time: 6.30pm

Venue: India International Centre