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CHAVITTU NADAKAM ( Malayalam
Malayalam
:ചവിട്ടുനാടകം) is a highly colorful Latin Christian
Christian
classical art form originated in Ernakulam district , Kerala
Kerala
state in India
India
. Commonly believed that Gothuruth is the birthplace of Chavittu Nadakam. It is noted for its attractive make-up of characters, their elaborate costumes, detailed gestures and well-defined body movements presented in tune with the rhythmic playback music and complementary percussion. This art form highly resembles European Opera
Opera
. Chavittu Nadakam is believed to be originated during the 16th century AD. This form of play is prevalent among the Latin Christian
Christian
community in the districts of Alappuzha , Ernakulam and Thrissur of Kerala. This cultural heritage had been vanished out due to the lack of responsible patronage. So in 1991 Kreupasanam Pauranika Rangakalapeedom has been started in Aleppey in order to document, upkeep, rejuvenate and represent all the dying coastal traditional art forms of Kerala
Kerala
coast. Kreupasanam has so many training centers in different districts in Kerala
Kerala
for giving training to young generation especially the school students. Research students also are welcome for residential studies in this institution. For More information and videos visit www.chavittunadakam.com, www.kreupasanam.in

The most sensual blend of cultural influences can be seen in this Latin Christian
Christian
dance-drama.

In Chavittu Nadakam there are large number of characters all in glittering medieval dress. It is the form of traditional musical dance drama, which symbolizes the martial tradition of Kerala
Kerala
Latin Christians.

CONTENTS

* 1 History * 2 Performance * 3 Librettos * 4 Most popular Chavittu Nadakam plays * 5 See also * 6 Notes * 7 External links

HISTORY

Chaviitu Nadakam is a Latin Christian
Christian
folk art form of Kerala. It is originated in Cochin where the Latin Christian
Christian
Portuguese missionaries have instituted their first mission. Chavittu Nadakam is believed to be originated after the arrival of Portuguese to the Kerala
Kerala
shores. The reason behind this assumption is that Chavittu Nadakam has a significant European character in its costumes and outfits. But there are historical evidences that Kerala
Kerala
had connections with the western world well before the arrival of Portuguese. Even though some argue that the Chavittu Nadakam is created by Portuguese as they felt cultural emptiness when they arrived at Kerala, there are no evidences supporting this view. Also the fact that Chavittu Nadakam uses language for its playback songs and dialogue, suggest that the art form is indigenous in origin. Original Chavittu Nadakam costumes: Queen Brijeena from Brijeena Charitham play

PERFORMANCE

The costumes used in Chavittu Nadakam

Chavittu Nadakam is usually performed on open stages. Sometimes the interior of a church is also a venue. The performers wear glittering European costumes. Training is provided to performers before staging the play. The master is known as Annavi. The whole play is performed through musicals. Dance and instrumental music are combined in this art form. The bell and drum are two instruments used as background score. The actors themselves sing and act. Though it used to be an open stage performance, in the recent times this is mostly played indoor. The predominant feature of this art is the artists stamping / pounding (Chavittu) the dance floor producing resonant sounds to accentuate the dramatic situations. The actors sing their lines loudly and with exaggerated gestures stamp with great force on the wooden stage. Hence literally Chavittu Nadakam means 'Stamping Drama'. Great stress is laid on the step, which goes in harmony with the songs. In these art forms there is a great importance for dance and art. Foot stamping dance, fighting and fencing are the essential part of Chavittunadakam. Royal dresses and ornamental costumes are necessary.

The play is considered a success if at the end, the stage cave into the pressure of heavy stamping.

LIBRETTOS

The stories are mostly the heroic episodes of Bible
Bible
or great Christian
Christian
warriors. Historical incidents, the life and adventure of heroes like Charlemagne
Charlemagne
; stories of Alexander were the themes of Chavittu Nadakam in the 16th century. In the 18th century, spiritual themes like "Allesu-Nadakam", "Cathareena Nadakam", the victory of the Isaac
Isaac
etc. were the themes. In 19th century moral themes like "Sathyapalan";"Njanasundhari","Komala Chandrika","Anjelica","karlsman"were handled.

Malayalam
Malayalam
writing

MOST POPULAR CHAVITTU NADAKAM PLAYS

The Frankish King Charlemagne
Charlemagne
was a devout Latin Catholic
Catholic
. Shown here, the Pope asks Charlemagne
Charlemagne
for help at a meeting near Rome
Rome

* Carelman Charitham ( Charlemagne
Charlemagne
the Great) * Brijeena Charitham (Life of Queen Brijeena) * St. Sebastian
St. Sebastian
* Daveedhum Goliyathum ( David
David
and Goliath ) * Mahanaya Alexander ( Alexander the Great ) * Veerayodhakkalude Anthyam (Death of Great warriors)

Part of a series on

CHRISTIANITY IN INDIA

Background

* Saint Thomas Christians (Nasrani) * Saint Thomas Christian
Christian
churches * Saint Thomas Christian
Christian
crosses * Synod of Diamper
Synod of Diamper
* Coonan Cross Oath * Malankara (historical)

People

* Saint Thomas the Apostle * Saint Alphonsa * Saint Francis Xavier * Saint Gonsalo Garcia * Saint Euphrasia Eluvathingal * Saint Kuriakose Elias Chavara * Saint Mother Teresa * Bl. Devasahayam Pillai * Mar Sabor and Mar Proth * Mar Baselios Eldho * Paremmakkal Thoma Kathanar * Thomas of Cana * Ignatius Elias III * Mar Gregorios of Parumala * Mar Varghese Payyappilly Palakkappilly * Mar Joseph C. Panjikaran * Mathews Mar Athanasius Metropolitan * Mar Geevarghese Dionysius * Abraham Malpan
Abraham Malpan
* Palackal Thoma Malpan * Mar Augustine Kandathil * William Carey

Denominations

* Catholic
Catholic
* Catholic
Catholic
Church in India
India
; * Syro-Malabar Catholic
Catholic
* Syro-Malankara Catholic
Catholic

* Oriental Orthodox * Brahmavar Orthodox Church * Malankara Jacobite Syrian Orthodox Church
Malankara Jacobite Syrian Orthodox Church
* Malankara Orthodox Syrian Church

* Church of the East * Chaldean Syrian * Malankara Church * Malabar Independent Syrian Church

* Protestant * Andhra Evangelical Lutheran * Asse