Witness Thappattam, Karagattam, Mayilattam

Rajagopalaswamy Canon premises here (Beerangi Medu), where an old Canon is mounted, was a hub of activity on Wednesday. For 62 foreign tourists who witnessed the India Tourism Day celebration organised by the Thanjavur Chapter of Indian National Trust for Art and Cultural Heritage (INTACH) and Centre for Traditional Performing Arts (CTPA), it was a chance to experience India at her cultural best.

Talents to the fore

Tourists from countries such as Israel, Sweden, France, Italy and USA, witnessed Thappattam by A.John Peter and group of Reddypalayam and Karagattam, Kavadi, Mayilattam and Poikaal Kuthiraiyattam, performed by ‘Kalaimamani' Banumathi Rajarethinam and group.

A unique feature of the celebration was Thappattam performed by girls, an art form that is usually dominated by male performers.

Thappattam is normally done by men. Some of tourists even took the instrument and started performing with the Thappattam artistes.

Tamil Selvi, a karagam artiste, showed off her prowess in the dance form by balancing two tumblers with her legs with a ‘tambalam' under her feet. Karagam by Tamil Selvi was a feast to the eyes and mind.

She danced keeping two tumblers in the legsd, a "tambalam" (plate) under her feet. While the colourful splendour of peacocks came alive during the Mayilattam performance, Rajarethinam and Banumathi swept the audience off their feet with their Poikaal Kuthiraiyattam performance.

The artistes riding in dummy horses exhibited the majesty of a king and queen riding the animal. The tourists were garlanded by C.Suresh Kumar, District Revenue Officer.

K.Manikandan, vice chairman of Thanjavur Municipality, P.Rajeswaram, Municipal Councillor of ward 26 in which the Canon premises is located and who is also a member of INTACH and S.Muthukumar, Founder of CTPA participated in the celebration. Hundreds of local people also witnessed the events. Catherine from France appreciated the artistes.