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Updated: November 16, 2012 11:51 IST

Tulu Yakshagana set for a comeback

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Lack of quality blamed for fading away of Tulu Yakshagana
Lack of quality blamed for fading away of Tulu Yakshagana

Hiriyadka mela ready for Tulu shows

As the “tirugata” (tour) of Yakshagana melas for 2012-13 season began from November 15, there is hope for the return of Tulu Yakshagana which disappeared from the scene last season.

The 14-year-old Mangaladevi mela which was the lone commercial troupe performing Tulu Yakshagana folded up and stopped “tirugata” in the last season. P. Kishan Hegde, who owned it, told The Hindu that the mela went down as a piece of history for lack of availability of local workers for erecting tent and other works.

Mr. Hegde, who now owned five melas — Saligrama, Halady, Madamakki, Soukuru, and Hiriyadkka — said that a four-hour new Tulu prasanga titled Barkurda Barage has been prepared for this year’s tour. It would be performed by artistes of Hiriyadkka mela. “We have received a few bookings for this Tulu show and will perform on demand,” he said.

The owner of five melas said that like last year the Hiriyadkka mela would continue to present shows both in tenku thittu and badagu thittu style in this season. After the Mangaladevi mela was folded up, its artistes were rehabilitated in Hiriyadkka mela which already had artistes performing in badagu thittu style. Shows were presented separately as per the requirement. It was the only mela presenting Yakshagana in both styles.

Karnataka Tulu Sahitya Academy president Umanath A. Kotian attributed the fading away of Tulu Yakshagana over the years to lack of quality in shows. He said that absence of standard in dialogues and pushing traditions aside made people drifting away from Tulu shows. Mr. Kotian said that Tulu Yakshagana could come back provided artistes kept what went wrong in mind.

From Thursday onwards, the sound of “chende” would reverberate the coastal towns for the next six months as Yakshagana performances would become common in towns and villages. Oldest Yakshagana troupes of Dharmasthala and Kateel temples, which perform “harake bayalatas” would begin their tour on November 21 and December 7, respectively. Other melas such as Mandarthi, Maranakatte, Bappanadu, Surathkal, and Sunkadakatte, would also start their tour in a few days.

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