Kochi: Yakshagana, a pre-classical Karnataka ballet is set to find its first-ever stage in Gothuruth, the homestead of India’s only traditional Christian ballet, 'Chavittu Natakam.
Sixteen artistes of Yakshagana Kendra in Udupi will present a 90-minute performance titled ‘Chakravyuh’ at Holy Cross Church compound in Gothuruth near Vadakkan Paravur in Ernakulam district on February 1 as part of a performing arts festival being organised alongside the Kochi-Muziris Biennale (KMB).
The show, which will begin at 8 pm on Sunday is being held in association with Sports & Arts Club of Gothuruth. It will present the story of Abhimanyu from the epic Mahabhararta.
“Yakshagana is the second phase of the Bharateeyam series organized by the Biennale,” said KMB’14 Director of Programmes Riyas Komu. “The basic idea is to showcase the variety of our performing arts as they reveal India’s syncretism.”
Keli Ramachandran, who is the curator of the Bharateeyam series, said the Yakshagana Kendra founded in 1971 is the brainchild of late Jnanpith awardee Dr K Shivarama Karanth, who was an exponent of this 500-year-old art, besides scholar Prof K S Haridas Bhat.
“Yakshagana is a fascinating combination of art, style, tradition, education and entertainment that appeals to all,” Ramachandran said. “Any effort to keep this theatre form vibrant and alive is worth it, as its contribution to the world is immense and unique.”
Yakshagana Kendra director Prof H Krishna Bhat said the institution trained its students in the gurukula system where the gurus and disciples live together teaching and learning. “The students also pursue mainstream education. The Kendra takes care of all expenses in return for the students dedicating themselves to mastering the art and preserving it,” he added.