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Kirata. Arjuna’s gift
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Year: 2011 / Director: -

Mahabharata Stories
Katakhali is the Indian theatre style par excellence. Native to Kerala, in south-western India, Kathakali in its current form dates back to the second half of the 18th century, when the Rajah of Kottarakkara wrote the majority of the repertoire inspired by the classical Hindu epic of Ramayana and Mahabha¬rata. Its golden age was around the half of the nineteenth century. Afterwards, Kathakali suffered the general decadence of the traditional Indian culture under the dominion of the British empire. After the independence (1947), thanks to some poet’s passion and to the intelligent initiative of the local government, Kathakali came back to its original splendor with an always growing verve and popularity.
Kathakali’s popularity, a real myth for the western stage culture,  is due essentially to technical rigor and to its actors’ legendary training. 


Kirata. Arjuna’s gift
Irrattakulangara Rama Varier (1801-1845)
The story we present, Kirata. Arjuna’s gift, is part of the grotesque and comical Kathakali repertoire in which heroes and gods are shown in their familiar and everyday life. It as well  comes from the Mahabharata, the longest epic poem in Indian and world literature, which in 18 books talks about jealousy, intrigues and fights in the two branches of the ancient Indian royal family, the Bharata: the Kaurava branch and their cousins Pandava. This central part of the narration is just a little part of the poem, in which we can find mystical, religious, philosophical and judicial themes, as well as genealogies, tales and didactical digressions.


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