Staff Reporter

Kozhikode: Episodes from the Ramayana and the Mahabharata came alive at the Town Hall on the fourth day of the Kerala State Kalolsavam.

The event was Yakshaganam and regardless of the competitive spirit that accompanied the rendition of this art form, high school students in their performances breathed life and perspective into mythological characters like Shoorpanakha, Lakshmana, Arjuna and Krishna. Offering proof that art knows no borders, all the participants put up a confident recital of Yakshaganam which has roots in south Karnataka and is sung in Kannada.

On being quizzed about their proficiency in Kannada, the budding artistes said they learnt the meaning of the songs and had then written the lines in Malayalam to memorise. Yakshaganam, celebrated in Karnataka as a true people’s theatre, combining folk and classical tradition besides elements of dance, music and theatre, lived up to its popular billing with the audience filling all the seats at the Town Hall. The beauty of Yakshaganam lies in its simple yet powerfully demonstrative movements that rely more heavily on theatre than dance.

Despite the hurdle of not knowing Kannada, the audience sat engrossed in a beautiful retelling of Shoorpanakha’s story by Amrita Sanskrit Higher Secondary School, Paripally, Kollam.

All is well that ends well, with the judges too concurring with the audience in their approval of the performances by awarding ‘A’ grade to all the teams.