Yakshagana: a Snapshot

Yakshagana, translates to song of the yakshas, which are spoken of in mythology, including our great epics. This is a traditional folk art, a form of theatre, that runs all night long. There are many troupes, that travel through villages, set up camp, and hold a performance. The costumes are colourful, and the entire act is very animated. This is a snapshot from an abridged version, held at the temple in my village, on the occasion of Shivratri. In the coming weeks, I shall present the story of the Syamantaka Jewel, narrated through a colourful, vibrant, Yakshagana performance. 

(Syamantaka jewel- some believe it is nothing but the Koh-i-noor, that has passed down the pages of history, leaving a long bloody trail. Reminds me of the Deathly Hallows, especially the Elder Wand!)

Read more on customs inherent to this region: Coastal Customs


  1. that is so cool to see :)

  2. Wonderful share. As far Syamantaka Jewel/Mani is concerned, it receives a mention in the Mahabharata and related epics. Ashwathama, son of Guru Dronacharya, had the jewel embedded on his forehead since birth. The jewel protected him. Later when he was cursed to live forever until Kalki killed him, the jewel was removed from his forehead. The wound received from this was/is never healed and kept/keep bleeding.
    If the rumors are believed Ashwathama is still sighted from time to time with the wound mark on his forehead.

    1. Yes, the story of this jewel is very interesting. This act of Yakshagana depicted the part involving Krishna and Balaram. Thanks so much!

  3. Nice post. Thanks for sharing…

  4. beautiful image, full of expression


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