Yakshagana performance by the Nele Nivedita children
Bengaluru: The Ganesh festival celebrations held at Vinayaka Layout, Ullala on September 21, was not like one of the several celebrations. What made the evening special was the Yakshagana performance by children of Nele Nivedita. Yakshagana is a folk theatre form that originated in Karnataka. It is a popular form of storytelling, famous for its colourful costumes, energetic narration and lively dance steps.
The theme chosen was story of Punyakoti, a beautiful folk story that celebrates victory of Truth. Eighteen girls participated and the dance was very impressive. All the characters were brought to life on stage—Punyakoti the Cow, its innocent calf, Arbhuta the Tiger, etc. Entry of the Tiger, Conversations between the Cow and Tiger, Cow and her calf, were done fabulously.
The story goes that the cow Punyakoti on its way back home encounters a hungry tiger who has not had his meal. Punyakoti convinces the tiger that she had to go home feed her calf and would return back to be the prey of tiger. Tiger allows the cow to go home and takes a promise to be back. When back at home the cow narrates the story and takes leave of its calf after feeding milk to it. Though the calf persuades Punyakoti to stay back, she is determined that she would tread the path of Truth. Back in the jungle when tiger sees Punyakoti to offer itself, the tiger is moved by the honesty the cow had displayed.
The girls performed this art under the guidance of Dr Begar Shivakumar. It was a visual treat to the eyes, and very satisfying that such platforms will boost these girls’ confidence, said an art enthusiast.