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Home » Information » Culture » Mohiniyattam

This classical dance form of Kerala was first performed by women in temples, over a thousand years ago, as an offering to God, their beloved. The movements may appear simple, but effort is required to capture the grace, suggestive of ocean waves, as seen in goddess Mohini, the Enchantress. This dance form exudes enchantment grace and passion. Mohiniyattam is a fusion of ' Bharathanatyam ' and ' Kathakali ', as it combines the graceful elegance of Bharatanatyam and dynamism and vigour of Kathakali. The performances are done only by women. In Mohiniyattam, the Lasya element of dancing is predominant, and the mood created is Sringaram (erotic) Mohiniyattam literally means the 'Dance of the Temptress'.
Mohiniyattam in Kerala took shape in the tradition of Devadasi dance and grew and developed a classical status. The word 'Mohini' literally means a maiden who excites desire or steals the heart of the on looker. It is a solo female dance (in a single costume ) in which the striking features is the musical melody and rhythmical swaying of the dancer from side to side and the smooth and unbroken flow of the body movement. The dance is focused essentially on feminine moods and emotions.

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