Poorakkali : http://www.neelaearth.com
Poorakkali was a ritual dance performed by men during the nine day Pooram festival in Bhagavathy temples, across the erstwhile state of Kolathunadu (northern Kerala).
The festival, to propitiate Kamadeva ( the god of love), begins with the Karthika asterism and concludes on the pooram asterism of the Malayalam month of Meenam (Pisces). Performed by a group of young men in loin clothes, this pirouette around a huge multi-decked nilavilakku involves a lot of martial skills and masculine movements.
There are no singers or orchestra accompanying the performance and the dancers themselves sing and keep rhythm by movements of the foot and clapping of hands. The songs are based on mythology. Songs in praise of Goddess Saraswathy (goddess of learning and art) and Lord Ganapathy (the elephant headed god) are also sung. The dance begins with systematic rituals after an invocation.
Usually the dancers observe a month of abstinence and strenuous practice before the performance. A