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The Kathakali Dancer
acrylic on silk

"Kathakali, the traditional dance drama of Kerala, is said to have originated in the 13th to 15th centuries when Malayalam began to diverge from Sanskrit and Tamil. Kathakali performances often begin after sunset, and continue all through the night. Lit by huge lamps, a spellbound audience watches as dancers are accompanied by drum beats and music.

I remember a temple festival my parents took me to as a child; we watched the Nalacharitham and Uttaraswaymavaram all night." 

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Last Updated: August 22, 2000

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