Kalamandalam and the frames on celluliod

Compiled by travel.manoramaonline.com

Founded by the renowned poet Vallathol Narayana Menon in 1930 along the banks of the Bharatapuzha, Kalamandalam stands for nurturing art and culture. It is a residential centre for learning traditional art forms. Now a deemed university, there are a lot of courses being taught here. Kathakali, Kudiyattam and Mohiniyattam was facing the threat of extinction during the British Raj and this led to the formation of the Kalamandalam. It was started at Kunnamkulam but later shifted to Cheruthuruthy on the land donated by the king of Cochin. Though initially, it was just the artistically talented people from the area who learned various dance forms here, over the years Kalamandalam has played host to foreigners too. They come to study Kathakali and other dance forms in Kerala, and then go back to their native places. Situated on the Bharathapuzha, the sprawling premises have caught the attention of many Malayalam movie makers. Mohanlal – Monisha – Vineeth starrer Kamaladalam was shot extensively in these premises.

Two years after Kamaladalam hit the marquee, Rajanikanth and Meena shot a beautiful dance sequence at Kalamandalam. The song with a bit of Malayalam words thrown in was shot in these premises. Rajanikanth shakes leg with Kathakali artists and Meena dances with the Bharatnayam artists in 'Kuluvalile Muthu' song.

There are caparisoned elephants in the background, and Kalaripayattu – the traditional martial art form in some of the frames between the song. Malayalam movies still keeps an occasional date with this centre of learning.

Reaching Kalamandalam
Kalamandalam is well connected by road and railwaysThe nearest railway station is Vallathol Nagar, but not all trains stop here. Shornur is the major railway hub.

The nearest airport is Calicut International Airport about 75kms away and the Cochin International Airport is about 87kms away.

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