Kathakali maestros Kalamandalam Gopi and Kottakkal Sivaraman will don the make-up on July 27. The veteran artistes will enact Nalan and Damayanti in the play, ‘Nalacharitham,’ (fourth day) to be staged at the Fine Arts Hall here. The programme is being organised by the Bank Employees Arts Movement Ernakulam (BEAME), in association with Ernakulam Kathakali Club.
The story revolves around Nalan who disguises as Bahukan after being bitten by the serpent Karkodakan. Nalan, living in exile, serves as King Rutuparna’s charioteer. Nalan accompanies his master to Damayanti’s kingdom on hearing the news of her second marriage. However, the news was spread by Damayanti to bring Nalan back. The confusion is cleared and the two are united.
Kalamandalam Gopi, whose portrayal of Nalan has become part of Kathakali legends, and Kottakkal Sivaraman, who is known for infusing life into the female characters he portrays, will come together to cast their magical spell on the audience.
Margi Vijayan, another veteran excelling in the portrayal of female characters, plays Kesini, Damayanti’s friend.
Palakkad Divakaran, an illustrious disciple of the late maestro Kalamandalam Unnikrishna Kurup, and Harish Kumar will sing the Kathakali ‘padams’ (stanzas).
Kalamandalam Unnikrishnan and Kalamandalam Sasi will accompany the artistes on the chenda and madalam respectively.