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Remembering the Koodiyattom legend

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MASTER OF THE ART: A file picture of Koodiyattom maestro Ammannur Madhava Chakyar performing.
MASTER OF THE ART: A file picture of Koodiyattom maestro Ammannur Madhava Chakyar performing.

Staff Reporter

KOCHI: Koodiyattom aficionados are yet to get over the death of Ammannur Madhava Chakyar, the doyen of the art. And so it is quite natural that the International Centre for Koodiyattom remembers the master actor at its next meeting.

Vice-chancellor of Kalamandalam Deemed University of Art and Culture, K.G. Poulose, will deliver the commemorative lecture on Ammannur at Government Sanskrit College auditorium on Saturday day at 5.30 p.m.

This will be followed by the staging of Karnabharam Koodiyattom at 6 p.m.

The moment being acted out is when Karna, as the new commander of Kaurava army after the fall of Drona, rides out to the battleground on hearing Duryodhana has already left. Salyar is the charioteer for the master archer.

While riding towards the battle, Karna imagines killing his arch rival Arjuna and visualises Pandava army scattering and Duryodhana’s victory. He then orders Salyar to take him towards Arjuna.

Again, he gets lost in his thought. This time, he is worried about how Pandavas transformed from foes to siblings after his birth secret was revealed to him by Kunti. He acts out his encounter with harsh truth as Kunti told him about her past.

He remembers giving her the promise that he would kill none of his brothers other than Arjuna.

Like his master’s curse making him forget skills when needed most, his mother’s love is holding him back from going all out for victory of his friend and King Duryodhana.

While acting out the conversation, Karna’s birth is also shown. He then braces up and orders Salyar to ride towards Arjuna.

Margi Madhu is coming onstage as Karna and ‘Nepathya’ Saneesh will be Salyar. Kalamandalam Ratheesh Das and Kalamandalam Anoop will be at the mizhavu and Kalamandalam Manikantan at edakka. Indu G. and Krishnapriya G. will provide rhythm. Nepatya, Moozhikulam is presenting the show, with Guru Moozhikulam Kochukuttan Chakyar as teacher.

The centre is also organising a Koodiyattom foundation course for students at St. Joseph’s High School, Thripunithura, on the same day from 9 a.m. onwards. This is being organised in association with the Union Ministry of Culture.

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