Art forms fuse to recreate moments from the Mahabharata
Two scenes from the Mahabharata — the disrobing of Draupadi, and the confrontation between Krishna and Duryodhana on the last day of the war — will be enacted in the vibrant Kattaikkuttu dance-drama tradition of Tamil Nadu, which uses colours, masks and costumes to great effect.
As the scenes unfold, Carnatic vocalists TM Krishna and Sangeetha Sivakumar will perform.
The event, organised by the city’s Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj museum and First Edition Arts, is called Karnatic Kattaikkuttu.
“The idea is to showcase both forms on an equal footing, even though they represent different social and aesthetic worlds,” says director Rajagopal.
The two-hour show will explore how the two art forms can speak to each other, share and exchange without compromising their own characteristics or independence, adds playwright and Kuttu actor, Perungattur Rajagopal.For the Draupadi scene, Sivakumar will sing a verse that represents her own interpretation.
TM Krishna will also be performing at a Carnatic concert the following day, accompanied by artistes Sheik Mahaboob and Kaleeshabi Mahaboob on the nadaswara (a double reed wind instrument). Day 2 will also feature Akkarai Subhalakshmi on the violin, Praveen Sparsh on the mridangam and BS Purushotham on the kanjira.
“This city is open and absorbs all culture,” says Devina Dutt, co-founder of FEA. “We especially love working with Krishna. He creates magic and brings down barriers.”