Soon after its inception, Kalamandalam has been a favourite hub of dancers, theater-artists, musicians, art-scholars, historians and aesthetes from all over the world. In ensuring a sound footing to the institution, each of them has contributed his/her mite. Dr. Clifford Jones and his wife Betty True Jones who were passionately drawn towards Kathakali and Mohiniyattam were instrumental in letting the world know about the uniqueness of Kalamandalam in the first half of the 20th century. The article Ms. Betty wrote on Mohiniyattam even today remains one of the most authentic documents ever written on this dance tradition. Dr. Phillip Zarrilli who did a research on Kathakali in the 1970’s at Kalamandalam later published his monumental work titled “Kathakali Complex”. Dr. Farley Richmond has, in his writings on traditional Indian theater, was influenced by his observations of Koddiyattam at Kalamandalam.

Ms.Milena Salivin, Director, Mandapa, Paris, has an enduing association with Kalamandalam as student of Kathakali and as a great patron of the traditional Kerala performing arts. She has invited the Kathakali, Koodiyattam and Thullal troupes of Kalammandalam a number of times for performances in Europe. In recognition of her contributions to Kalamandalam and to the classical arts, Kalamandalam conferred on her the M. Mukundaraja Memorial Award several year back. Dr. Marlene Pitkow and Dr. Rolf Groesbeck took their doctorates in Female Representations in Kathakali and The Drum Music Tradition of Kerala respectively thanks to their studentship and research at Kalamandalam. From 1990 to 2000 there were a dozen researchers engaged in study and research on various art disciplines at this institution. More recently Dr. Justine Lemos did a detailed research on Mohiniyattam. She was associated with the University of California, Riverside. Ms. Sarah Sohn, herself a renowned young painter, was at Kalamandalam for an applied research on the facial make-up and costuming of performing arts with special reference to Kathakali. Both of them were Fulbright scholars.

Kalamandalam Kathakali and Koodiyattam troupes have participated in almost all the international dance-theatre festivals held in Europe, USA and Canada during last five decades. For the Ramayana festival held in Bagkok twice and in the Asia-Pacific Festival held in Taipei under the National Centre for the Arts, Kalamandalam Kathakali and koodiyattam performances were a major attraction. At the Indian Festival held in New York in 1985 Kalamandalam Kathakali troupe represented by Kalamandalam Krishnan Nair, Ramankutty Nair and Gopi and others presented a sterling recital. The troupe later toured Canada and France and left an indelible impression on the spectators wherever performed. The Indian Council for Cultural Relations has sponsored Kalamandalam troupes time and again for performances in Europe, the US, Australia and Canada.

 

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Kerala Kalamandalam
Deemed University for Art and Culture
Cheruthuruthy – 679 531 via Thrissur, Kerala, India
Telephone: 91+ 4884 262418, 262562, Fax: 91- 4884 - 262019

 

www.kalamandalam.org
Email: info@kalamandalam.org

 

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