[ KATHAKALI ] Kerala, India


As I've finally (after a long, insomnia-ridden train ride (my first of many no doubt)) reached 'Gods Own Country', aka Kerala, I couldn't pass up the opportunity to witness first hand the magnificent but rather peculiar tradition that is Kathakali. A traditional dance-drama, Kathakali has been performed throughout India for the last 300 years, but its origin lies within the modern day state that is Kerala. What drew me almost straight off the boat and over to the Kathakali Centre on Fort Cochin were the fabulously colourful costumes and exaggerated make-up styles of the characters. I'd seen pictures all over the internet during my research into the states' traditional practices but getting up close (the front row of course!) is really something else. The composition each character's costume are made up of a multitude of layered fabrics, jewellery and accessories -not to mention numerous coats of face paint!

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