Redefining a performance tradition: institutionalisation, internationalisation and innovation in Kudiyattam

Madhavan, Arya (2011) Redefining a performance tradition: institutionalisation, internationalisation and innovation in Kudiyattam. In: International CHIME Conference on Performing Arts in Contemporary Asia: Tradition and Travel, July 6 – 9, 2011, Royal Holloway University of London (RHUL), Egham, Surrey (UK).

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Abstract

Kudiyattam is the oldest existing theatre form in the world which claims a continuous performance history since 200 BC. It is not one of the dance form from India but the only remaining example of Sanskrit theatre. Kudiyattam was performed in temple theatres known as Kuthampalams and flourished owing to royal patronage until about the middle of 20th century. However, the very survival of this performance form was threatened with the thorough change in the political structure of emerging India in 1940’s and the waning of the royal patronage. But Kudiyattam survived through difficult times by inviting a series of changes to the ways in which it was preserved and fostered. The aim of my paper is to analyse such factors that saved Kudiyattam from completely disappearing from the world – factors such as institutionalisation and internationalisation. I also aim to analyse the impacts of these factors on the recent innovations that took place in Kudiyattam on various levels including empowerment of female performers and new pieces that were devised recently.

Item Type:Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Additional Information:Kudiyattam is the oldest existing theatre form in the world which claims a continuous performance history since 200 BC. It is not one of the dance form from India but the only remaining example of Sanskrit theatre. Kudiyattam was performed in temple theatres known as Kuthampalams and flourished owing to royal patronage until about the middle of 20th century. However, the very survival of this performance form was threatened with the thorough change in the political structure of emerging India in 1940’s and the waning of the royal patronage. But Kudiyattam survived through difficult times by inviting a series of changes to the ways in which it was preserved and fostered. The aim of my paper is to analyse such factors that saved Kudiyattam from completely disappearing from the world – factors such as institutionalisation and internationalisation. I also aim to analyse the impacts of these factors on the recent innovations that took place in Kudiyattam on various levels including empowerment of female performers and new pieces that were devised recently.
Keywords:sanskrit theatre, Kudiyattam, Kutiyattam, Innovations in Kudiyattam, Internationalisation, Traditional Indian Theatre
Subjects:T Eastern, Asiatic, African, American and Australasian Languages, Literature and related subjects > T300 South Asian studies
W Creative Arts and Design > W410 Acting
W Creative Arts and Design > W440 Theatre studies
W Creative Arts and Design > W400 Drama
Divisions:College of Arts > Lincoln School of Performing Arts
ID Code:5741
Deposited By: Arya Madhavan
Deposited On:31 May 2012 16:11
Last Modified:11 Aug 2014 16:54

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