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Thiruvananthapuram, Oct 24 (IANS) Kerala Kalamandalam that teaches the globally recognized art form of Kerala — Kathakali, has for the first time in its history of 90 years, admitted girl students.
In class VII of Kalamadalam, out of 10 students admitted, 9 are girl students for its Kathakali course. Kathakali is a highly masculine art form with even the female characters being portrayed by men. The attempt is being welcomed across the world.
However several women had started practicing Kathakali since 1970 and 1990 and K.K. Gopalakrishnan, renowned art critic of Kerala in his research book, ‘Kathakali Dance – Theatre’, said that some women from foreign countries had trained for some short-term courses in Kerala on Kathakali.
Most of these performing women artists were either trained privately by Kathakali masters but this is the first time that Kalamandalam is taking in girl students for its long-term program.
T.K. Narayanan, Vice-Chancellor, Kerala Kalamandalam told media persons that giving admission to girl students in Kalamadalam was a demand from several quarters since long and that this academic year the governing body has decided to give admission to girl students in a full-time program at Kalamandalam.
Training at Kalamandalam from school days would expose the students to the teaching and guidance of experts and a diverse pool of teachers of the institute who have huge exposure and deep knowledge of the subject.