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Karakattam (Tamil: கரகாட்டம் or "karakam (கரகம் 'water pot') dance") is an ancient folk dance of Tamil Nadu performed in praise of the rain goddess Mariamman.[1] The performers balance the water pot on their head very beautifully. Traditionally, this dance is performed in two types - Aatta Karakam is danced with decorated pots on the head and symbolizes joy and happiness and is mainly danced for entertainment, while the Sakthi Karakam is performed only in temples as a spiritual offering.[2]

Earlier it was performed only with the accompaniment of the naiyandi melam, but now it also includes songs. In the Karakattam, intricate steps and body/arm movements decides the skill of performer. This dance can be performed individually or in pairs, by both the sexes. Some of the steps that are widely used are similar to the circus acts; dancing on a rolling block of wood, up and down a ladder, threading a needle while bending backwards and many more. Today, the pots have transformed from mud pots to bronze ware and even stainless steel.

The pots are decorated in many ways with the help of attractive flower arrangements, topped by a moving paper parrot. The parrot rotates as the dancer takes swings along these looks beautiful. When men perform this dance, they balance the pots filled with uncooked rice, surrounded by a tall conical bamboo frame decorated with colourful flowers. Drums and long pipes form the musical instruments that add vigor to the dance. Also they dance standing over a plate i.e. rim of the plate, filled with water, without spilling water out of the plate while balancing the karakam on their head.

Most expert artistes are from the regions of Thanjavur, Pudukkottai, Ramanathapuram, Madurai, Tirunelveli, and Pattukkottai and Salem, Tamil Nadu. Karakattam is also very popular in countries with significant Tamil minorities such as Singapore, Malaysia and Sri Lanka.

In 1989, a Tamil movie, Karagattakaran, was made that featured as its central characters practitioners of karakattam. The movie went on to become very popular and an advertisement for the dance form, especially because of the music by Ilaiyaraja and, in particular, the song, "Maanguyilae Poonguyile."

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[3]== References ==

External links[edit]

Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Karakattam — Please support Wikipedia.
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86 news items

Times of India

Times of India
Sun, 23 Nov 2014 02:30:00 -0800

Bollywood actor and filmmaker Satish Kaushik is all set to do his first Tamil film, Tharai Thappattai, which is being directed by Bala. The actor will be seen playing an important role in the film which is based on the dance form Karakattam. Confirming ...

Times of India

Times of India
Thu, 20 Nov 2014 23:41:15 -0800

Bollywood actor-filmmaker Satish Kaushik, who was recently raved for his performance in Nagesh Kukunoor's 'Lakshmi', has landed an important role in Bala Pazhanisaamy's upcoming Tamil film 'Tharai Thappattai'. "Bala sir had approached Satish Kaushik ...
Sun, 23 Nov 2014 14:30:00 -0800

And thus ends up sharing a house with Thamburu (Manikantan Pattambi), a Karakattam performer in a new village and settles there for business. Thamburu develops a crush on Venkedi and becomes insecure when he sees him with other women. The movie ...
The New Indian Express
Tue, 18 Nov 2014 16:33:45 -0800

A toilet campaign will be conducted to create awareness of personal hygiene among mothers and children, said Yasoth. “Communicating to the villagers through traditional art form like Karakattam, Marakkalattam and Kolattam will have a greater impact ...

The News Reports

The News Reports
Sat, 22 Nov 2014 03:03:45 -0800

If reports are to be believed, actor-filmmaker Satish Kaushik has been roped in to play a significant character in Bala Pazhanisaamy's forthcoming Tamil project titled 'Tharai Thappattai'. The 58-year-old film and theatre actor was recently praised for ...
Times of India
Wed, 19 Feb 2014 23:07:30 -0800

Varalaxmi Sarathkumar will be seen playing the role of a Karakattam dancer in National Award winning filmmaker Bala Pazhanisaamy's yet-untitled upcoming Tamil directorial. The actress will undergo special dance training for her role. Karakattam is an ...

Bollywood Life

Bollywood Life
Thu, 20 Feb 2014 04:49:19 -0800

Karakattam is an ancient folk dance in which the dancer performs with a pot on the head. “Varalaxmi has been signed for the film. She is a trained dancer and I thought someone with the dance skills only can even attempt this role. She will undergo ...


Tue, 13 May 2014 00:49:32 -0700

Varalaxmi Sarathkumar has signed her next big venture with National Award winning director Bala. Titled as Tharai Thappattai, the film marks her third movie in Tamil. In preparation for her role, Varu has started learning Karakattam, dance form of ...

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