Kaikottikali, handclap folk dance of Onam celebrations

Kaikottikali, handclap folk dance of Onam in Kerala… Importance of Kaikottikali dance of Onam festival celebrations…

Kaikottikali or Thiruvathirakali, performed mainly on the occasion of Onam and Thiruvathira, is very famous folk dance of Kerala performed by Both, Young and old women dance whole-heartedly.

Kaikottikali is regarded extremely elegant dance form as the lasva or the beauty element predominants. When men dance with women, they represent an element of thandava (dance to destroy the universe found in some part of Malabar Area).

The Dress

The attire is a kind of typical Kerala style; it is gold bordered traditional two piece clothes called Mundu and Neriyathu. Mundu, a one piece clothes, is wrapped around lower part of body and Neriyahu is worn over the blouse. Women tie their hair in a form of Bun and use a fragrant Jasmine garland on it for additional charm.

The Dance

In Kaikottikali, Usually Eight to ten performers clap simultaneously; performers, gracefully, binding in sideways, move clockwise and anti-clockwise directions in a circle. Co-ordination, Rhythm, tune, beat and song they sing are of great importance, performers move themselves in unison.

Girls, generally, move in a circle around Nilavilakku, a traditionally Brass Lamp placed at centre of well decorated Pookalam, a flower Rangoli. One of performers sings and others repeat it as as chorus.

The tale depicted in the Kaikottikali and Ragachay are derived from Kathakkali, a profound dance form of Kerala. Accordingly, the song are based on Krishna-Lila, Shakunthalam, Kuchelavritham and Dhurvacharithram. Rhythmic movement is paid more attention than mudra.

Kaikottikali songs are based on Ragas Hussiani, Bhairavi and Kamboji; sometimes, they are deviate from Folk tales and puranic stories.

Sometimes, in the worship of Saraswati, Ganapati and Krishna, devotional songs are sung and a special song is also sung in praise of king Mahawali for the Onam festival is celebrated on king’s arrival to the State of Kerala.

Onam 2013 date is September 16.

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