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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 a pot on their head . Traditionally, this dance is categorized into two types- Aatta Karakam is danced with decorated pots on the head and symbolizes joy and happiness. It is mainly performed to entertain the audience. 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 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 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 moves. 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. They also 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."



External links[edit]

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

The Hindu

The Hindu
Sat, 16 Jan 2016 01:30:44 -0800

He still has memories of his visits to the oor thiruvizha,and the karakattam troupes that danced away through the village lanes. “For that reason, I want to watch Thaarai Thappattai. It will be like an ode to my childhood, and a reminder of the lovely ...

I am in dna of India

I am in dna of India
Wed, 23 Sep 2015 04:03:45 -0700

Artists performed the Karakattam – an ancient folk dance form from Tamil Nadu at Vrindavan Society in Kandivali (W) as Ganesh Chaturthi festivities continue. The People's Welfare Association of Poisar organised the performance. "The dance is performed ...

The Hindu

The Hindu
Tue, 26 Jan 2016 16:07:00 -0800

Funded under the State Balanced Growth Fund under the State Planning Commission and District Rural Development Agency (DRDA), artists performed dramas and dance and karakattam in villages to create awareness on using toilets regularly.
The Hindu
Sat, 16 Jan 2016 16:04:30 -0800

Folk artistes performed various traditional art forms including karakattam, oyilattam, naiyandi melam and silambattam to entertain the tourists. Students from the Madurai Kamaraj University, studying tourism management, accompanied the foreigners and ...

International Business Times, India Edition

International Business Times, India Edition
Wed, 20 Jan 2016 05:45:48 -0800

The story is set in the backdrop of karakattam. The movie is written and directed by award-winning filmmaker Bala. It released on 14 January for Pongal. Three other films — Udhayanidhi Stalin-starrer "Gethu", Sivakarthikeyan's "Rajini Murugan" and ...

News Today

News Today
Sat, 16 Jan 2016 00:23:54 -0800

A template Bala film in rural background with violence and gore makes up 'Tharai Thappattai'. He has taken to one too many layers in narration - from the dying art of 'karakattam' to sufferings of women to travails of a youngster who loses his love ...

Film Dhamaka

Film Dhamaka
Mon, 18 Jan 2016 10:22:13 -0800

Tharai Thappattai is a movie which is based on the life of Karakattam musicians and dancers in Tanjavur. The film just like any other Bala movies touches the deep rooted emotions of human mind, and he has said the story in a real life manner which will ...

Bollywood Life

Bollywood Life
Thu, 20 Feb 2014 04:45:00 -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 ...

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