The breathtaking beauty of Kerala has attracted travelers and visitors from across the world since time immemorial. The aromatic spices attracted the Portuguese, who later established trade relations and took these spices to their country. Ayurveda has become a world-renowned branch of medicine. Kalaripayattu, which is considered as the world’s first form of martial arts, also originated in Kerala. It is the blend of the lush green landscapes, diverse and opulent culture, and the alluring tradition that has given Kerala the title of ‘God’s Own Country’.
Kerala is also the land that has produced some unique and intricate forms of performing arts that have found admirers in all parts of the world. These art forms have the distinct signature of the culture that Kerala follows and effortlessly gels with the customs and traditions of Malayalees. Perhaps the most important and vibrant art form that originated in the State is Kathakali. This classical art form, which evolved in the 17th century, has acquired a place in the Guinness Book of World Records for the thickest make-up in an art.
The detailed enacting of ancient epics and mythology through a dance-drama performance has lifted Kathakali into a position where it has managed to attract different sections of admirers. Kerala Kalamandalam is very important in this context. The institution has been imparting training in the major art forms of Kerala like Kathakali, Koodiyattam, Thullal, Mohiniyattam, etc. purely in the traditional way that these art forms need to be taught. That is one of the reasons why Kalamandalam still adheres to the ancient Gurukul system. Kalamandalam has also produced some extremely talented and ace Kathakali artistes who have not only spread the charisma of Kathakali in India, but have also represented India globally.