Kathaakaalakshepa - A Study (Musical Discourse)

Item Code: NAJ413
Author: Dr. Premeela Gurumurthy
Publisher: University of Madras
Language: English
Edition: 2009
Pages: 269 (8 B/W Illustrations)
Cover: Paperback
Other Details 8.5 inch X 5.5 inch
Weight 280 gm
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Book Description

About The Author

Dr. Premeela Gurumurthy, Professor and Head of the Department of Indian Music, University of Madras, is also the President and Chairperson of the School of Fine and Performing Arts. Holding two Post Graduate Degrees in Indian Philosophy and Indian Music she worked on the Art of Kathakalakshepa of the various States in India with special reference to the Tanjavur Style for her Doctoral Dissertation. This book based on her research has been acclaimed as the only authentic work analyzing the history, performance, the metrical compositions along with the contributionof the veterans of the art. She is a vocalist specialized in Karnatik and Hindustani Classical Music along with Tamil Tirumuraj hymns. She has also learnt the rudiments of Kathakalakshepa, its history and performance styles Embar S. Vijayaraghavachariar and C. Bannibai, both celebrities of this art form. She has also occasionally performed Harikatha in India and abroad. She is a rare combination of an academician who is also a vocalist of high merit who continues to perform concerts and lecture demonstrations. She was awarded a fellowship by the Cultural Ministry of the Government of India for her research in this art form. This book has been well received.

Nominated by the Governor of Tamil Nadu, she is at present a member of the Syndicate of the University of Madras. During her headship she has introduced PG Degrees in Bharatanatyam and Rhythmology along with a five-year integrated course entitled Natya consisting of two majors viz., Bharatanatyam and theatre. Apart from this, under the UICIC (University Industry Community Interaction Center) certificate courses in Karnatik Music, Harikatha and Bhajana, Hindustani Music, Western Music, voice conservation and care (in collaboration with Sri Ramachandra University) have been initiated.



I am indeed very pleased that a book on ‘Harikathakalakshepam’ has been authored by Dr. Premeela Gurumurthy. As proud patrons of our fine arts, religion, philosophy and literature, we should try to promote and preserve our traditional arts. Our temples and places of worship have been centres of learning where traditional art forms flourished.

It is timely that Dr. Premeela had taken up the study of Kathakalakshepam “a one person theatre form”. I am happy that this book is available for those interested in our arts and culture.

I have known Dr. Premeela had taken her student days and am very happy that she has blossomed out to be a musician, musicologist and scholar. Her knowledge of several languages is also a great asset to her. Her research work on Kalakshepam is commendable. I have listened to her lecture demonstrations with great interest. She is one who is devoted to her work and present her programmes to the joy and satisfaction of her listeners. Her lecture demonstrations on Gopalakrishna Bharati’s Nandan Charithram’ and ‘Harikatha’ at our music festivals, evoked great interest. Her articles in magazines are very informative and provide good reading.




  Prof. S. Ramchandran (i)
  Dr. N. Mahalingam (iii)
  Sangeeta Kalaanidhi Dr. Semmangudi R. Srinivasier (v)
  Kalaimamani C. Banni Bai (vii)
  Acknowledgements (ix)
  Source of the study (xiv)
Chapter I Kathaakaalakshepaandi Its Components 1
  The essential Features  
  The Historical growth  
  The Birth of the Tanjavur Style of kaalakshepa  
  Purana Pathana and Upanyasa  
  Kaalakshepa form prior to Krishna Bhaagavatar  
  Impact of Marathi Kirtan on Kathaakaalakshepa  
  Contribution of Periyanna and Krishna Bhaagavatar to the development of Kathaakaalakshepa  
  Pandit Lakmanaachaarya and Tiruppalanam Panchaapagesa  
  Shastri their contribution  
  The Tamil Tradition  
  Katai Paadai  
  Kathaakaalakshepa and Performing Arts  
  First set of Arts Forms  
  Taala Maddale  
  Bhagavatamela Naataka  
  Second set of Art Forms  
  Prabhandam Kottu  
  Chakyar Kottu  
  Villu Paattu  
  Kanian Koottu  
  Burra Kathaa  
  Chitra Kathaa  
  Role of Music  
  Elements of Improvisation  
  Music element in the narration  
  Musical instruments used in Harikathaa  
  Tales of Kathaakaalakshepa  
  Seven beat Tala  
  Five beat Tala  
  Three beat Tala  
  Nirupana Upakathaas  
  Dance in Harikathaa  
Chapter II Musical Forms IN Kathaakaalakshepa 67
  Manipravaala sloka  
  Kamade Chanda  
  Paarsi Tune  
Chapter III Katha Tradition In The States-Maharashtra, Karnataka, Kerala And Andhra Pradesh 105
  The Naaradiya style  
  The Vaarkari style  
  Gaagariya purana  
  Influence of Maharashtra  
  Musical Forms  
  Patronage of the Rulers  
  The Kottu tradition  
  Andhra Pradesh  
  Bhajana, Harikathaa and Yakshagaana in Andhra Pradesh  
  Bith of the Modern Telugu Harikathaa Tradition  
  Harikathaa and Yakshagaana  
  The style of performing  
  Music in Telugu Harikathaas  
  A brief outline of the Telugu Harikathaa Literature  
  Lady writers  
  Important styles of Kaala kshepa during the 19th and 20th century  
Chapter IV Performers of Harikathaa 140
  Varahur Gopaala Bhaagavathar  
  Tanjaavoor Krishna Bhaagavatar  
  Hits visit to Madras  
  Bhaagavatar's special talents  
  Disciples and Upagaayakass of Tanjaavoor krishna Bhagavatar  
  Tanjaavoor Panchaagesa Bhaagavatar  
  Tanjaavoor Govinda Bhaagavatar  
  Tanjaavoor Naagaraaja Bhaagavatar  
  Tanjaavoor N. Subramania Bhaagavatar  
  Those who followed the style of Tanjaavoor Krishna Bhaagavatar  
  Soolamangalam Vaidhyanaatha Bhaagavatar  
  Maangudi Chidambara Bhaagavatar  
  Chitrakavi Sivaraama Bhaagavatar  
  Soolamangalam Soundaraaja Bhaagavatar  
  Tanjaavoor N.S. Krishna Bhaagavatar  
  C. Saraswathi Bai  
  C. Banni Bai  
  Pandit Lakshmanaachaaryar  
  Tiruppaanam Panchaapagesha Shaastri  
  Disciples of Tiruppalanam Panchaapagesha Shaastri  
  Nallur Vishwanatha Bhaagavatar  
  Valangaiman Raamaiah Bhagavatar  
  Kumbakonam S. Vadiraaja Bhaagavatar  
  Tiruvaiyaru D. Annasamy Bhaagavatar  
  The two disciples of Annasamy Bhaagavatar  
  Kamala Moorthi  
  G. Ramamoorthi Bhaagavatar  
  The Embaar School  
  Chidambaram Srirangaachaaryar  
  Embaar S. Vijayaraagavaachaaryar  
  Musicians who entered the field of Harikathaa  
  Harikesanalur Muthiah Bhaagavatar  
  Kallidaikurchi M. Vedanta Bhaagavatar  
  Mannargudi R. Saambasiva Bhaaavatar  
  Some other performers of Harkathaa  
  Palani Subramanya Bhaagavatar  
  P.K. Rahunaatha Bhaagavatar  
  Trivandrum R. Naaraayana Bhaagavatar  
  Brief account of some Kathaa perfomers of Maharashtra, Kamaataka, Kerala and Andhra Pradesh  
  Gayaacchaarya Daada Buva Badodekar  
  Kirtan Saarvabhauma Naana Buva Badodekar  
  Ranganath Buva Supekar  
  The Gadre Family of Kirtankars  
  Dattatreya Gadre Family of Kitankars  
  Dattatreya Gadre Family of Kitankars  
  Purushottam Dattatrey Gadre Maharaj  
  Raajaaram Purushottam Gadre Maharaj  
  Bhadragiri Achuta Das  
  Bhadragiri Kesava Das  
  Konanur Family of Bhaagavatars  
  Fururaajulu Naidu  
  Tumkur K. Venugopaladasa  
  M.P. Manmadan  
  K.K. Vaadhyar  
  Joseph Kaimamparamban  
  V. Saambasivan  
  Andhra Pradesh  
  Aadibhatla Naaraayandas  
  Orighanti Seetaaraamaanjaneya Bhaagavatar  
  Vatlamani Narasimha Dasu  
  Manthripragada Lalithakumari  
  Ammani Bhagavatarini  
  Appauli Raaghavendra Rao  
  Mulukutla Sadasiva Shastri  
Chapter V Modern Trends 206
  Public Performances  
  Early period  
  Present day  
  Performance style: Early Period  
  Present day  
  Concert form  
  Narration, music and dance  
  Teaching of Harkathaa  
  Early period  
  Present day  
  School of Harikathaain Tanjaavoor  
  The Tamil Nadu Government College of Music  
  Kirtan Mahaavidyaalaya  
  The Dasaaraama International Centre  
  Sant Dhyaaneshwar Harikathaa Kirtan Mahaavidhyaalaya  
  Sri Sarvaraya Harithaa Pathasala  
  Harikathaa, its application  
Chapter VI Conclusion 218
  The Tanjaavoor style  
  The contribution of Harikathaa to Carnatic Music  
  Performing Arts  
  Katha tradition in the different States  
  Performers of Harikathaa  
  Modern Trends  
  Suggestion for future research  
  Preserving the Art  
Appendix I Nation of some musical forms figuring in Kathaakaalakshepa 230
  Bibliography 235

Sample Pages

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