'Parichamuttukali - an ancient war-like dance'OF KERALA
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Parichamuttukali is a folk dance popular in the districts of Kottayam, Ernakulam and Malappuram in Kerala, India.
In this art form the dancers holding mock swords and shields dance around a lighted Nilavilakku (the traditional wicked lamp). The dancers follow steps of a sword fight and songs with martial themes are sung.
Ilathalam or cymbals, the only accompaniment, are struck in rhythm according to the steps of the performers. The dancers leap forward, step backward and move round in harmonious and gracious movements. Vigorous shouting and chanting are notable features of the dance.
Parichamuttukali is believed to be older than Kalarippayattu, the classical martial art of Kerala.
In the Malabar region (northern districts of Kerala), members of the Thiyya community take part in this dance, while in Kottayam it is more popular among the Christian community.
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