Velinji, a forested small town in Palakkad district, sits quietly on the banks of the Kunti River. This offbeat city has, over the centuries, produced many traditional artists, especially Kathakali artists.
A cultural experience of Kerala for the traveler in you
Today, if you know anything about the beautiful culture and dance form of Kathakali in Kerala, it is all because of Velinjhi village. Apparently, every family in this village has produced at least one Kathakali artist. Besides Kathakali artistes, the village has also produced several traditional Kerala percussion artists, each making their valuable contribution to strengthening Kerala’s cultural scene.
For those who don’t know, Kalagram or Velinjhi as an industrial village was never a thing. In fact, this is a recent development, almost a decade old now.
We are all aware of how culture, tradition and art risk dying slowly if not careful over time. It has happened in the past. If language disappears over time, it will not take long for culture and tradition to disappear. This happens if you are not aware of the traditions and culture.
Kathakali, despite being one of the youngest classical forms of dance, is sadly one of the many dying art forms. Its old patrons are long gone and the new ones are not many to be able to support the art form. To keep this type of folk art alive, nurturing is needed. Enter Vellinezhi Kalagramam.
This kalagram or art village is the result of a proper discussion at the right time. In 2012, the Malayalam daily
Malayala Manorama Directed a series on the tradition of Kathakali theatre. And it was definitely Velinezhi at the center of the discussion. Many articles have been written about villages and arts, many have read and are reminded of the importance of preserving such art and culture. Thus the idea of an art village started to take shape and later reached the government authorities and various artists who wholeheartedly supported the project.
By January 2013, an appropriate advisory body was formed to plan and implement the Art Village project. Fast forward nearly a decade, today we have Velinjhi as one of the premier destinations for all things Kathakali, art and culture in Kerala. The artists of this Kalagram are responsible for keeping alive the art and tradition of Kathakali. From artistry to decorative headgear and ornaments used in Kathakali performances, everything is made in this village. Velinzhi, if you want to experience the art and culture of Kerala, is where you should be.
- Where is Velinezhi Kalagramam?
Velinji Kalagramam is located in Palakkad district of Kerala.
- Why is Velenezhi Kalagram important?
Velinji is one of Kerala’s premier destinations for all things Kathakali, art and culture. The artists of this Kalagram are responsible for keeping alive the art and tradition of Kathakali. From artistry to decorative headgear and ornaments used in Kathakali performances, everything is made here in this village. Velinzhi, if you want to experience the art and culture of Kerala, is where you should be.
- When is the best time to visit Palakkad?
December to February is the best time to visit Palakkad. Light rain may occur in October-November.