Wayanad's Theyyam artists lose props, homes in flood

theyyam-artist
Apart from a Rs 5 lakh loss incurred due to the destruction of Theyyam props, the community also lost their homes to the surging waters: File photo
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Kalpetta: Theyyam artistes from three traditional Malaya families Of performers have been rendered helpless by the floods.

The Theyyam season in Kerala kicks off in November and stretches till June. This year though, the 15 artistes near Pazhamudi bridge will be rendered jobless as their props and costumes have been washed away in the devastating flood.

The traditional drum 'Chenda', 'Ilathalam or cymbals, costumes and decor stored in the ancestral homes of the artistes were all washed away. Some items were spared by the flood, but most of it were rendered useless.

Artists say that it is hard to get replacements for the season that opens in November as the items need advance booking.

The Malaya community had been staging Theyyam performances in most of the temples in Wayanad for ages and conforming to tradition they go through a 41-day long ritual of self-restraint. They eat just one rice meal a day and prepare their mind and the body for the performances.

Apart from a Rs 5 lakh loss incurred due to the destruction of Theyyam props, the community also lost their homes to the surging waters.

Seeking shelter and livelihood, the community has now approached the district collector and the scheduled caste development department.

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