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Chakiarkoothu: This dance, which is believed to be of Aryan origin, is performed only in temples by the members of the Chakiar caste. The only accompaniments are the cymbals and the copper drum known as the ‘miazhavu. The dance is staged in the theatre halls known as 'Koothambalam' or 'Kuttampalam'.


Cherumarkali: It is a harvest dance in which the dancers, both men and women move in a swift rhythm, linked in a back lock or holding arms.


Kavadiyattam: It is a ritual dance offering in the Subramanya temples.


Kolkali: It is a group dance form of the farming community in Kerala.


Kummattikali: It is a temple folk art and an awe-inspiring mask dance.


Kumbhamkali (Kumbhamthullal): ‘Kumbhamkali’ or ‘Kumbhamthullal’ is a folk ritual dance of devotees carrying pots on the head.


Kummi:  It is performed by women.


Kuthiottam: It is a song and dance ritual exclusive to the Devi temples of South Kerala.


Oppana: It is a Muslim bridal group dance.


Ottantullal: It is a solo dance form of Kathakali, referred as 'poor man's Kathakali'.


Padayani or Padeni: It is one of the most colourful and spectacular folk dances associated with the festivals of certain temples in Alleppey, Kollam and Kottayam districts of southern Kerala. It involves impersonating divine and semi-divine figures by wearing huge masks (‘kolams’) of different shapes, colours and designs.


Purapaddu:  It is performed by the male and female dancers.


Theyyam:  ‘Theyyam’ or ‘Kaliyattom’ is a ritual dance typical of the northern Malabar. Elaborate description of such rituals is found in the Tamil literature of the Sangam period (500 B.C.-500 A.D.). As a performing art, Theyyam offers an unusual experience. The painting of the face, the gorgeous attire and the imposing headdresses all speak of a developed artistic sensibility. 


Thidampu Nritham: It is the 700 years old ritualistic art form of North Kerala.


Thiruvathirakali: It is a dance form which is a pointer to the old customs followed in Nair ‘tharawads(joint families) where the women of the house arrange themselves in a ring and go around a floral arrangement while clapping their hands to the accompaniment of  songs (‘Thiruvathira pattu).


Thullal: This dance form, which owes its origin to Kunjan Nambiar, one of the leading Malayali poets, is characterised by simplicity of presentation, wit and humour. It is of three types – ‘Ottanthullal, Seethankam thullal and ‘Parayanthullal.


Tira: This is also a ritual dance similar to Theyyam but exists only in the northern part of Kerala.


Todyam:  It is performed behind the stage.


Vadithallu: It is a folk dance in which artistes tap the short sticks held in both hands.



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