Yakshagana artists to get pension shortly

Academy yet to receive list from govt.

September 12, 2022 12:32 am | Updated 12:32 am IST - MANGALURU

Karnataka Yakshagana Academy presented honorary award, Yaksha Siri award and endowment award for 2022 and book award for 2021 at a function on the premises of Durgaparameshwari Temple, Kamalashile, in Udupi district on Sunday.

Karnataka Yakshagana Academy presented honorary award, Yaksha Siri award and endowment award for 2022 and book award for 2021 at a function on the premises of Durgaparameshwari Temple, Kamalashile, in Udupi district on Sunday. | Photo Credit: SPECIAL ARRANGEMENT

Chairman of Karnataka Yakshagana Academy G.L. Hegde said on Sunday that Yakshagana artists will also receive pension from the State government shortly.

Speaking at a function organised by the academy at Kamalashile in Udupi district to present the annual awards, Mr. Hegde said that the academy is yet to receive from the government the list of artists eligible to receive pension. But the pension for the artists is in the offing.

Stating that Yakshagana has a history of over 1,000 years, the chairman said that the particular art form has contributed immensely to nurturing the classical Kannada language.

Expressing concern over Yakshagana turning “too commercial”, he said that many artists of yesteryear had built and promoted Yakshagana by selling their property, farmland and gold. It is due to their penchant for the art form. Such an art form built over the years should continue to sustain its desi form, he said.

Referring to today’s happenings in the Yakshagana “chowki” (green room), he said that many artists did not communicate with their fellow artists. Instead, they are seen busy chatting over social media or browsing before entering the stage or after their exit from the stage. Some artists left the place of performance as soon as their roles got over. “Human relation in the green room is vanishing,” he said.

Earlier, there was a system in place where junior artists interacted with seniors and learnt the nuances of the art form from them in the green room before and after a performance. There was total team work in the presentation of shows, he said.

The Bhagawatha (singer-cum-director) of each Yakshagana mela (touring troupe) now has a greater role to play by taking control over the team mates to re-establish human relation in the green room to lift the performance, the chairman said and asked the artists to follow the instructions of the Bhagawatha.

Each artist should have the responsibility to sustain the art form in its true form by actively participating in team work, he said.

“The Yakshagana Academy has other roles to play to promote Yakshagana. It is not the duty of the academy to correct deviations within a Yakshagana performance,” he said.

The chairman said that the academy is in the process of preparing an encyclopaedia of Yakshagana. When it is ready, it will be a great addition to literature.

Chairman of Karnataka State Permanent Backward Classes Commission K. Jayaprakash Hegde said that the academy should set up a fund to help poor artists in crisis.

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