With the clash of cymbals, Painkulam Ravichandran Chakyar, 69, will make an entry on a stage put up at the Thiruchembur Murugan temple in Chembur on Saturday, promising 180 minutes of laughter and satire.
Dressed in traditional attire with flamboyant make-up and a large golden headgear, Ravichandran, who has come all the way from Thrissur, will perform the traditional ‘Chakyar Koothu’ to celebrate Vishu, the Malayalam New year.
Chakyar Koothu is an art form originally from Kerala, which is considered to be the traditional equivalent of the modern stand-up comedy act, incorporating commentary on current socio-political events in chaste Malayalam and Sanskrit. “It requires verbal prowess, presence of mind, concentration and a sense of humour,” said Ravichandran, who has been performing the art form in temples since 1998. “The challenge before the modern Chakyar is to effortlessly tell the tale in Malayalam without using even a single English word,” he added.
During the act, Ravichandran will narrate episodes from Hindu epics such as the Ramayana and the Mahabharata and other stories from the Puranas.