Lecture Demonstration with Karin Bindu and Sajith Vijayan

16.05.2019 09:00

Mizhavu – Southindian Percussion Instrument in Kutiyattam and Mizhavu Melam Ensembles

16. Mai – 9:00–10:30 Uhr – Hörsaal 1 des Instituts

Kutiyattam – Kerala’s Sanskrit drama with 2000 years of tradition – is considered an intangible World Heritage Site. Being a “visual sacrifice” (Chaksbusba Yagna), this Performing Art Form combines dance with theater performance and mainly percussive music. Due to the ritualistic context of these performances, the supporting main percussion instrument Mizhavu was given the name “Deva Vadyam” – instrument for the deities. Accompanying music is used here in three functions: 1.) Percussion for Kriya Nrittam: The accompaniment of concrete dance steps of the actresses in the form of specific rhythmic musical phrases without special facial expressions. 2.) Music that refers to the emotionally significant course of action in Kutiyattam in response to changing Ragas, Bhavas, and Rasas. 3.) Music in passages within an act without actor.
In Mizhavu Melams, three to five Mizhavu percussionists, accompanied by an Iḷatalam player, gong player, Centa drummers and Horn players play different rhythmic phrases with gradually increasing tempo. This talk gives an insight into mostly unknown ritualistic Hindu Drama and Ensemble traditions in Kerala including live demonstrations.

Kalamandalam Sajith Vijayan, (M.A.) is one of the internationally best-known artists of Kerala Kalamandalam, Deemed University of Performing Arts in South India. From 2001–2007 he studied the percussion instrument Mizhavu at K.Eswaranunni at the Kutiyattam Department of the Kalamandalam in Cheruthuruthy, a few years later he passed his master's degree. Since 2007 he works as temporary assistant teacher at the Mizhavu Department.
Since 2003: Numerous performances as Mizhavu percussionist and as Chakyar Koothu performer with Kutiyattam, Nangiar Koothu and Chakyar Koothu Performances, Mizhavu Melam and Mizhavu Thyambaka in India, Austria and France. International performances with the theater production “The Kitchen” (by Roysten Abel) took him to Ireland, Holland, Korea, France, Belgium and Australia. In 2018 he got a film actor by the movie “Harmony with A.R. Rahman. Entering the Kalari: Featuring Kalamadalam Sajith Vijayan”.
Facebook profile: https://www.facebook.com/sajith.vijayan.712

Karin Bindu, Mag.a Dr.in phil. works independently as a percussionist and as a cultural and social anthropologist in the fields of education, art and culture. Since 1991, she has been focused on musical rhythms of different cultures (India, Trinidad, Orient and West Africa), which she not only integrates into the teaching and music practice, but also scientifically researches and presents them in the form of lectures and written articles. Her dissertation entitled “Percussion Art Forms: Aspects of the Production and Communication of Southindian Talas in the Kutiyattam” appeared in 2013 at the LIT Verlag Munich / Vienna. As a percussionist she is part of the “Weltenmusik Trio” as well as part of the Indian dance performance “Transition into Life” with Srinwanti Chakrabarti. Her home university is the University of Vienna. Contact: karin_bindu@hotmail.com.

Abstract and biographies for download

Kutiyattam Performance in Kerala