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Yakshagana (Kannada: ಯಕ್ಷಗಾನ, yakṣagāna, [jɐkʃəɡaːnɐ]) is a theater form that combines, dance, music, dialogue, costume, make-up and stage techniques with a unique style and form. This theater style is mainly played in the coastal districts and Malenadu regions of Karnataka, India and traditionally played for whole night, till sunrise next morning.
Yakshagana is the recent (200 years) scholastic name for what are known as kēḷike, āṭa, bayalāṭa, bayalāṭa, daśāvatāra (Kannada: ದಶಾವತಾರ). It is believed to have evolved from pre-classical music and theatre during the Bhakti movement. Yakshagana is popular in the districts of Uttara Kannada, Udupi, Dakshina Kannada, Shimoga and Kasaragod district . Yakshagana has become popular in Bangalore over the recent years, particularly in the rainy season, when there are few performances in the coastal districts. It has drawn comparisons to the Western tradition of opera. Actors wear costumes and enact various roles. Traditionally, Yakshagana would go on all night. It is sometimes simply called as ಆಟ "play" in both Kannada and Tulu. Yaksha-gana literally means the song (gana) of a yaksha, which was a term for exotic tribes of ancient India.
Yakshagana consists of a himmela "background music group" and a mummela "dance and dialog group", which together perform Yakshagana poetry. Himmela consist of a bhagawata "singer" who is also the director (also called the first actor, modalane vesha), maddale, harmonium for drone (pungi was used earlier) and chande (loud drums). The music is based on Carnatic ragas characterised by melodic patterns called Mattu and Yakshagana Tala. Yakshagana Talas are believed to be based on patterns which later evolved into Carnatic talas.
A Yakshagana performance begins at the twilight hours with the beating of several fixed compositions on drums called abbara or peetike. This lasts for up to an hour before the actors get on the stage. The actors wear resplendent costumes, head-dresses, and face paints.
A performance usually depicts a story from Indian epic poems and the Puranas. It consists of a narrator (Bhagvatha) who either narrates the story by singing or sings prepared character dialogues, backed by musicians playing on traditional musical instruments as the actors dance to the music, with actions that portray the story as it is being narrated. All the components of Yakshagana, music, dance and dialog are improvised. Depending on the ability and scholarship of the actors, variation in dance and amount of dialog may change. It is not uncommon for actors to get into philosophical debates or arguments without going out of the framework of the character being enacted. The acting can be categorised as method acting.
Yakshagana is a recent scholastic name adopted for what were and are known as Kelike, Aata, Bayalaata, Dashavatara in Karnataka. Yakshagana actually refers to a style of writing and to the written material or the Yakshagana poems. There are questions on whether this writing system originated in Telugu literature and used for poems enacted in Bayalaata. Yakshagana performance is believed to have evolved from the now-extinct Ghandharva Grama musical system. Earliest mention is in Sangeetha Ratnakara of Sarngadeva (AD 1210) as Jakka later called Yekkalagaana. Yakshagana in its present form is believed to be influenced by the Vaishnava Bhakthi movement. Yakshagana is a separate system of music independent of Karnataka Sangeetha and the Hindustani music of India, believed to survive as an indigenous phenomenon only in parts of Karnataka and Kerala. Although origins of Yakshagana is traced to Historic period and even Pre- historic periods, linking Ganddharagrama and Natya shastra and ekkalagana, first written evidence about present day Yakshagana is available on an inscription dated 1556 CE found at Lakshminarayana Temple, Kurugodu, Somasamudra, Bellary district, a copy of which is available at University of Madras. This inscription mentions of a land donated to the performers of the art, so as to enable people enjoy tala maddale programmes at temple. Another important evidence is available in the form of a manuscript of Virata Parva on palm-leaf found at Ajapura (present day Brahmavara) and the poet's name was Vishnu. One more historic Palm-leaf manuscript dated 1621 CE describes Sabhalakshana.
There is some resemblance among the members of the 'Traditional Theater Family' like Ankhia Nata (Assam), Jathra (Bengal), Chau (Bihar, Bengal), Prahlada Nata (Orissa), Veedhinatakam & Chindu (Andhra), Terukoothu Bhagawathamela (Tamil Nadu), Kathakkali (Kerala). Researchers have argued that Yakshagana is markedly different from this group.
Experts have placed the origin of Yakshagana from the 11th century to the 16th century. Earliest limit is fixed by a finding by Vidwan Bannanje Govindacharya who says a legend goes to show that Sage Narahari Thirtha (c, 1300) started a Dasavathara Ata performance and a troupe in Udupi and later this spread to other places and grew into what we call Yakshagana today.
Yakshagana must have been an established form by the time of famous Yakshagana poet Parthi Subba (1600) to whom Ramayana in Yakshagana is attributed. Shivarama Karantha in his research work argues that it is Subba son of Venkata who is its author, rejecting claims by Muliya Thimmappa and Govinda Pai citing procedural lapses in their findings. Because he is said to be a Bhagawatha (singer) himself and is believed to have founded a troupe, and probably he is the formulator of the Tenkuthittu (Southern style) of the art. Troupe centers like Koodlu and Kumbala in Kasaragod District, and Amritheshwari, Kota near Kundapur claim having a troupe three to four centuries ago. So we can safely assume that this art form had taken shape by about 1500. However, what we see today as Yakshagana, must have been the result of a slow evolution, drawing its elements from ritual theater, temple arts, secular arts like Bahurupi, royal courts of the time and artists imaginations – all interwoven over period.
It is related with other forms prevailing in other parts of Karnataka and neighbouring states of Andhra Pradesh, Kerala, Tamil Nadu and Maharastra. Yakshagana, like many other forms, defies neat classification into categories like folk, classical, rural. It can be included into each of these, or all of them together, depending upon our line of approach. Being a theater form, unlike a dance form, it is more plural and dynamic. And hence it exhibits many types and varieties inside itself. However, Yakshagana can be rightly called a traditional form. Primarily it is a name given to the form prevailing in Coastal and Malnad areas of Karnataka, though forms like Doddata are also called by the same name often. The traditional theater form Mudalpaya of Southern Karnataka, the Doddata of Northern Karnataka, the Kelike in the borders of Andhra Pradesh, the Ghattadakore of Kollegal in Chamarajnagar district – are such forms. Among them, the Ghattadakore is a direct branch of Coastal Yakshagana, while Mudalapaya is the most closely connected form.
Early Yakshagana poets include Ajapura Vishnu, Parthi Subba, Nagire Subba, Purandaradasa etc. King Kanteerava Narasaraja Wodeyar II(1704–1714) has authored 14 Yakshaganas in various languages in Kannada script.[a] Mummadi Krishnaraja Wodeyar (1794–1868) has also written several Yakshagana prasanga, including Sougandhika Parinaya.[b] Muddana has composed several Yakshagana prasangasa including much popular Rathnavathi Kalyana.
Yakshaganamu in Andhra Pradesh
Growth and changes
With the socio-economic changes of the 19th century, arts like Yakshagana also changed. The 19th century produced a big number of compositions. Around 1800, a troupe from Dharmastala visited the court of the king of Mysore and established a troupe there. In the 1840s, a troupe (Karki Hasyagar Mela) from Uttara Kannada (North Kanara) visited Maharastra, and inspired the first modern age mythological drama by Vishudas Bhave. A number of troupes arose all over the Coastal Karnataka and probably in other parts of Karnataka too. By the early decades of this century the structure of Yakshagana reached a definite shape and form.
1930s saw some changes in compositions, organizations and presentation. Dance and the spoken word was further developed and refined. But in costume, a type of degeneration started setting in due to the use of 'modern' clothing and stone jewellery, in place of hand loom clothing and wooden ornaments.
The year 1950 saw the birth of 'tent' troupes, giving performances to audience by tickets, with 'tent theaters' and furniture for seating. These troupes brought in commercialization of Yakshagana, with both merits and demerits. Yakshagana saw major changes in form and organisation, electrical lights replaced the 'gas lights' or 'petromax' lamps. Seating arrangements improved. Major changes came in the themes, with the inclusion of folk epics, Sanskrit dramas and created (imaginary) stories forming the thematic base. Popular entertainment became the criterion in place of 'classical' presentation. Tulu, the language of the Southern part of the D.K. district was introduced on the stage, where hitherto only Kannada was used. This gained great popularity. All these trends continued with added vigor after 1970s, with a new element of influence. Noted writer, Kota Shivaram Karanth experimented with the dance form by introducing Western musical instruments. He also reduced the time of a Yakshagana performance from 12 hours to two and half hours, for the convenience of city dwellers. Another trend that has emerged in modern Yakshagana is the incorporation of movie stories.Yakshagana has undergone innovation in dance and theatre, which includes performances of Shakespeare. Nowadays Female artists in Sagara are performing a full fledged yakshagana show, like wise there are numerous Troops.
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Second half of 20th Century saw experiments and adoptions for this art into other forms, notable such effort being that of Shivarama Karantha, who produced yakshagana ballet using local yakshagana artists and exhibited all over India. The experiments of Dr. Karanth attracted criticism also and one court deciscion banned public performance of his experiments as Yakshagana.
Yakshagana is finding new grounds outside India. Amateur troupes have emerged on the coasts of California, USA and Ontario, Canada. "Yakshagana Kalavrinda" and Yaksharanga in the USA and Yakshamitra in Canada are a few examples. Yakshamitra performs in Toronto, Canada and is first to use local live music (Himmela) for their performance. "Yakshagana Kalavrinda" performs on the east coast of USA. Yakshagana in the USA started after the visit of Yakshagana artist Sri Chittani Ramachandra Hegde. His performance at the age of 74 was so inspiring that art lovers decided to continue this great art thousands of miles away from its home. Sri Kidayuru Ganesh who accompanied Sri Chittani stayed back for couple of months to train new generation of Yakshagana artists. The result was a performance of Yakshagana “Sudanvarjuna Kalaga” with participation from local enthusiasts. Since then Yaksharanga has performed many shows around California. These troupes usually use a recorded background Yakshagana music(Himmela) for their performances. Other amateur troop outside of India is "Yakshamitra" in Toronto, "Canada".
Another Yakshagana Troupe "Shri Idagunji Mahaganapati Yakshagana Mandali, Keremane headed by Shri Keremane Shambhu Hegde and Shri Keremane Shivanand Hegde toured USA and performed about 22 programs all over North America. The troupe visited about 12 countries and celebrated 75 years in history of Yakshagana.
Scholars have classified Yakshgaana broadly into two types.
- Moodalopaya Yakshagana includes eastern maidan areas of Karnataka such as Channarayapattna and Arsikere Taluks of Hassan District, Nagamangala Taluk of Mandya District, Turuvekere Taluk of Tumkur District, Hiriyuru, Challakere of Chitradurga District and North Karnataka.
- Paduvlopaya Yakshagana comprises the Western parts of extended Karnataka, including Kasaragod dakshina Kannada, Udupi and Uttara Kannada.
Paduvalopaya Yakshagaana is divided into three variations
- Tenkutittu ( includes areas Kasaragod (Kerala), Manalore District, Udupi, Sampaaje, Sulliya, Puttur, Bantwala, Belthangady, Karkala etc.)
- Badagutittu (Udupi to Kundapura area, Uttara Kannada district)
- Badabadagutittu/Uttara Kannadatittu (extreme north parts of Uttara Kannada)
The Badagutittu style, as its name indicates, is prevalent in Northern parts of South Canara, that is, from Padubidri to Byndoor and North Kanara District. The Badagutittu school of yakshagana gives emphasis on facial expression, matugarike (dailogues) and dance appropriate for the character depicted in the episode. It makes use of a typical Karnataka chande. The Badagutittu style was popularized by Shivram Karanth's Yakshagana Mandira at Saligrama village in Dakshina Kannada as a shorter, more modern form of Yakshagana. Keremane Shivarama Hegde, the founder of the Yakshagana troupe, Idagunji Mahaganapathi Yakshagana Mandali is an exponent of this style of Yakshagana. He is also the first Yakshagana artist to receive the Rashtrapati Award. Sri Chittani Ramachandra Hegde won Padmashri award for his life time contribution to the art.
One of the traditional variation, the Tenkutittu style, is prevalent in Dakshina Kannada, Kasaragod district, Western parts of Coorg (Sampaje) and few areas of Udupi district. The influence of Karnatic Music is apparent in tenkutittu buttressed by the type of Maddale used and in Bhaagavathike. This does not mean that Yakshagana is completely classic. At best, we can say that Yakshagana is a folk art influenced by classical aspects. Tenkutittu amply exhibits that Yakshagana is basically a folk art and not of classic or elite tradition. In Tenkutittu traditionally more than 15 types of colours have been identified. But in practice three important set of colours are identified: 1. Raajabanna 2. Kaatbanna 3. Sthreebanna
Himmela in Tenkutittu is a coherent one with beats of Chande and Maddale coupled with chakrataala and Jaagate of bhaagavatha result into an excellent symphony. Dance form of tenkutittu strikes the attention of audience by 'Dheengina' or 'Guttu'-Performers often do Dhiginas, jumping spins in the air and often continuously spin hundreds of times. Tenkutittu is a variation of Yakshagana more focused on high flying dance moves. Tenkutittu is well known for its extravagant Rakshasas (Demons) and its incredible dance steps. The Tenkutittu, albeit, has remained a popular form and has its own audience even outside the coastal areas. DHARMASTHALA MELA and KATEELU DURGAPARAMESHWARI MELA (most popular melas), HOSANAGARA mela and other melas have popularized this form. Several creative plays have been composed by noted scholars such as Amritha Someshwara.
Yakshagana Rāga refers to melodic framework used in yakshagana. It is based on pre-classical melodic forms that comprise a series of five or more musical notes upon which a melody is founded. Ragas in Yakshagana are closely associated with a set of melodic forms called Mattu. In Yakshagana tradition, rāgas are associated with different times of the night throughout which Yakshagana is performed.
Yakshagana Tala (Sanskrit tāla) are frameworks for rhythms in Yakshagana that are determined by a composition called Yakshagana Padya. Tala also decides how a composition is enacted by dancers. It is similar to Tala in other forms of Indian music, but is structurally different from them. Each composition is set to one or more talas, and as a composition is rendered by Himmela, the percussion artist(s) play supporting the dance performance.
Yakshagana Prasanga and literature
Yakshagana poetry (Yakshagana Padya or Yakshagana Prasanga) is a collection of poems written to form a music drama called Yakshagana. The poems are composed in well known Kannada metres using the frame work of Yakshagana Raga and Yakshagana Tala. Yakshagana also has what is called a Yakshagana metre (prosody). The collection of Yakshagana poems forming a musical drama is called a Prasanga. Oldest surviving parasanga books are believed to have been composed in 15th century. Many compositions have been lost. There are evidences to show that oral compositions were in use before 15th century. The Yakshagana Prasangas (Literature) are printed in paperback editions nowadays and sold in bookstalls.
Costumes and ornaments
Yakshagna costumes are rich in color. The costumes or Vesha in Kannada depends on characters depicted in the play or prasanga. It also depends on Yakshagana style or tittu.
Badagutittu Yakshagana Ornaments are made out of light wood, mirror work, colored stones. Though, lighter materials like thermocol are used in modern days, ornaments are still predominantly woodwork.
Yakshagana costumes consist of headgear (Kirita or Pagade), Kavacha that decorates chest, Buja Keerthi (armlets) that decorate shoulders, and belts (Dabu) all made up of light wood and covered with golden foil. Mirror works on these ornaments helps to reflect light during show and adds more color to costumes. These armaments are worn on a vest and covers upper half of the body. Lower half is covered with Kachche that comes in a unique combination of red, yellow and orange checks. Bulky pads (cloths) are used under Kachche and this makes actors different from general audience in size.
Bannada Vesha that involves detailed facial makeup is used to depict monsters. It may take 3 to 4hrs to complete makeup for certain vesha.
Traditionally, males are playing female roles in Yakshagana. However, more recently yakshagana has seen female artists, who have performed in both male and female roles. Stree Vesha uses sari and other decorative ornaments.
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Yakshagana bells are a pair of finger bells made of a special alloy (traditional five metal). They are made to fit the tonic of the singer (bhagawatha). Usually professional singer carry more than one of their own finger bells to be able to sing for different drones. Pair of finger bells are available for different keys. Tala (Bells) which plays a major role and its handled by "Bhagavatha". So it creates and decides the entire background music of Yakshagana.
Evidence shows that there were more than 30 string puppet troupes in the undivided Dakshina Kannada district during the period 1910–1915 in places like Basrur, Barkur, Kokkarne, Mudabidri etc. The presentation of the puppetry in Yakshagana style is highly stylized and adheres strictly to the norms and standards of Yakshagana. The puppets used are generally 18 inches high and the costumes are similar to those worn by the characters from Yakshagana with the same elaborate make-up, colorful headgear and heavy jewellery. The person who infuses life into the puppet and makes it come alive, by dexterous manipulation is known as the Suthradhara. The content in the Yakshagana puppetry, is drawn heavily from the ancient epics.
Though Yakshagana puppetry had existed since a long time, it was moulded by Laxman, Narasimha and Manjappa Kamath, hailing from Uppinakudru village in Kundapur taluk. Devanna Padmanabha Kamath, the grandson of Laxman Kamath infused new life into it and performed shows all over India. Later, Kogga Devanna Kamath improved this art and took to greater heights and for his contribution, he was recognised with Tulsi Samman and Sangeet Natak Akademi Award. Currently, his son Bhaskar Kogga Kamath is at the forefront, performing shows and training youngsters in Yakshagana puppetry.
Training and research
The late Sri Kukkila Krishna Bhat has performed lot of research and written several books on Yakshagana. He was one of the authorities on Yakshagana history of Karnataka. Partisubba is one of his most famous books
Training schools for Yaskhagana are very few in Coastal Karnataka. As most troupes are associated with temples, the training has been confined to the temple premises. However, the Govinda Pai Research Institute, located at MGM College, Udupi, runs a Yakshagana Kalakendra in Udupi that trains youngsters in this ancient dance form. Another famous institute is the SRIMAYA Yakshagana Training Center founded by Shri Keremane Shambhu Hegde. The Govinda Pai Research Institute does research work on language, rituals and dance art forms.
Background Singers are Bhagawatike
Balipa Narayana Bhagavatha (Sr), Adur Anni Bhagavatha, Puttige Ramakrishna Jois, Balipa Narayana Bhagavatha (Jr), Damodara Mandechcha, Nalluru Mariyappa Achar, Agari Srinivasa Bhagavatha, Agari Raghurama Bhagavatha, Kadathoka Manjunatha Bhagavatha, Padyana Ganapathi Bhat, Padyana Govinda Bhatt, Puttige Raghurama Holla, Siribagilu Ramakrishna Mayya, Tenkabail Thirumaleshwara Shastry, Kuriya Ganapathi Shastry, Maindappa Rai, Dinesh Ammannaya, Polya Laxminarayana Shetty, Balipa Prasada Bhagavatha, Balipa Gopalakrishna Bhagavatha, Balipa Shivashankara Bhagavatha, Kuriya Ganapathi Shastri, Kubanuru Sridhara Rao, Raghavendra Mayya, Hosamoole Ganesha Bhat, Smt. Leelavathi Baipadithaya (The only lady singer in Yakshagana [Tenkutittu]), Bottikere Purushothama Poonja, Andala Deviprasad Shetty, Ravichandra Kannadikatte, Praphullachandra Nelyadi, Pattla Satish Shetty and οthers.
Ira Gopala Krishna Bhagavata, Kadatoka Manjunath Bhagavata, Kadatoka Krishna Bhagavatharu, GR Kalinga Navuda, Nebbooru Narayana Hegde, Hosthota Manjunath Bhat(Famous yakshagana poet also), Subramanya Dhareshwara, K P Hegade Golagodu, Heranjal Gopala Ganiga, H Suresh Shetty, Narayanappa Uppur, Vidhwan Ganapathi Bhat, Gopal Bhat, Jogi, Raghavendra Maiya, Raghavendra Achari, Nelluru Narayana, Kolagi Keshava Hegde, Kolagi Madhava Bhat, Narayana Shabaraya, A T Yejneshwara Sagara, Vishweshwara Somayaji, Maravanthe Narasimha Das Bhagavath, Maravanthe Shrinivasa Das Bhagavath, Marvi Vadiraja Hebbar, Sarveshvar Hegde Murooru, Shankar Bhat Brahmooru, Ramkrishna Hegde Hilluru, Prasanna Bhat Bhalkala and οthers.
Kudrekudlu Ram Bhat, Nidle Narasimha Bhat, Divana Bhim Bhat, Adur Krishna, Kasaragod Venkataramana, Chipparu Krishnayya Ballal, Bandedka Sunder Rao, Kadaba Narayana Achari, Mambady Subrahmanya Bhat, Padyana Shankaranarayana Bhat, Padyana Jayaram Bhat, Padmanabha Upadhyaya, Delanthamajalu Subrahmanya Bhat, Adur Ganesh Rao, Subrahmanya Shastri, Chaithanya Krishna Padyana and οthers.
Yakshagana artists are called "Mummela Patradarigalu".
Adkasthala Narayana Shetty, Adkasthala Sanjeeva Shetty, Sheni Gopal Krishna Bhat, Maadangayi (Putturu) Krishna Bhat, Madhur Narayana Hasyagar, Kadri Vishnu, Bannada Kuttyappu, Bannada Maalinga, Chandragiri Ambu, Arbhi Annappa Chawta, Sanjeeva Chawta, Guddappa Gowda, Kolyoor Dr.Ramachandra Rao, Aruva Koragappa Shetty, Aruva Narayana Shetty, Kumble Sundar Rao, Bantwala Jayarama Acharya, Bettampadi Balappa Shetty, Ramadasa Samaga, Mijar Annapa, Mijar Thimmappa, Maadavu Thimappa Shetty, Bolar Narayana Shetty, Puttur Narayana Hegde, Madhur Ganapathy Rao, Puttur Shreedhara Bhandari, K. Govinda Bhat, Alike Ramaya Rai, Empekatte Ramayya Rai, Gubbye Ramayya Rai, Gumpe Ramayya Shetty, Halladi Jayaram Shetty, Chennappa Shetty Siddaktte, Vishwanath Shetty Sidakatte, Ubaradka Umesh Shetty, Kuriya Vittala Shastry, Nayana Kumar, Kokkada Ishwara Bhat, Mankude Sanjeeva Shetty, Nidle Govinda Bhat, Muliya Bheema Bhat, Patala Venkatramana Bhat, Padre Chandu, Madhuru Radhakrishna Navada, Bannada Dharmasthala Gopal Bhat, Shivarama Jogi, Perodi Narayana Bhat, Kumble Shreedhar Rao, Kedila Jayarama Bhat, Dasappa Rai, Sarpadi Ashok Shetty, Sampaje Diwakara Rai, Chandrashekhara Dharmasthala, Sadashiva Kulal, Dinesh Maniyani, Mahesh Maniyani, Seetharam Kumar Kateel, Vasantha Gowda, Varkadi Tharanatha Blyaya, Mundaje Sandeep Shetty and others and Kateelu Mela's Bannada Harinayan Bhat, Bannada Shivaprasad Bhat, Bannada Koikude Moodumane Shashidhar Shetty, Bannada Gerukatte Gangayya Shetty, Bannada Rama Kulal, Bannada Ittappa Gowda, Bannada Nagri Mahabala Rai, Bannada Subraya Patali(S/o. Bannada Malinga), Kanjarpane Shambaya Bhat, Renala Ramakrishna Rao, Perara Laxmana Kotian, Mundaje Sadashiv Shetty, Kavalkatte Dinesh Shetty, Karangala Krishna Moolya, Panakaje Vishnu Shrama, Bellare Vishwanatha Rai, Putturu Sunil Bhandari, Umesh Hebbar, H.Ganesh Bhat, Bayaru Ramesh Bhat, Pundariksha Upadyaya, Todikana Vishwanatha Gawda, Nellyadi Prashanth Shetty, Sunnambala Visheshwara Bhat, Bellare Manjunath Bhat, Subraya Holla Kasaragod, Peruvai Narayana Shetty, Padre Kumara(S/o. Padre Chandu), Pushparaj Jogi, Appakunji Maniyani and οthers
Muroor Devaru Hegde, Keremane Shivaram Hegde, Keremane Mahabala Hegde, Keremane Shambhu Hegde, [Jalavalli Venktesh rao], Bananje Suvarna, Chittani Ramachandra Hegde, Gode Narayan Hegde, Bhaskar Joshi, Balkur Krishna Yaji, Kondadakuli Ramachandra Hegde, Uppunda Nagendra Rao, Keremane Shivananda Hegde, Manki Eshwar Naik, Thombattu Vishwanath Achari, Hadinbal Sripad Hegde, Sreepad Bhat Thandimane, Ganapathi Hegde Thotimane, Kappekere Mahadev Hegde, Ganapathi Bhat Kannimane, Prabhakar Chittani, Argodu Mohandas Shenoy, Sridhar Hegde Chapparmane, Nilkod Shankar Hegde, Mantapa Prabhakara Upadhyaya, Jalavalli Vidyadhar Rao(son of Jalavalli Venktesh Rao), Yalaguppa Subrahmanya Hegde, Narayan Hasyagar Karki, K P Hasyagar Karki, Thirthahalli Gopala Achari, Subramanya Hegade Chittani, Kolali Krishna Shetty, Chapparamane Shridhara Hegde, Marvi Ramkrishna Hebbar, Smt.Mookambika Varambally and οthers
Taala Maddale artists
Sheni Gopalkrishna Bhat, Shankarnarayana Samaga Malpe, Dr.Kolyuru Ramachadra Rao, Kormanda Manjappa Rai, Matti Subba Rao, Pollya Deju Shetty, Vidhwan Kerekai Krishna Bhat, Tekkatte Ananda Master, Deraje Seetaramayya, Moodambailu Gopalakrishna Shastry, Sunnambala Vishweshwara Bhat, Dr. Prabhkar Joshi, Kumble Sundar Rao, Madhur Ganapathy Rao, K Govinda Bhat, Uduvekkodi Subbappayya, Jabbar SaMo, Subrahmanya Bhat Venur, Vasudeva Samaga, Ramadasa Samaga, Katte Parameshwar Bhat, Melukote Umakantha Bhat, Vasudeva Ranga Bhat, Ganaraja Kumble, Radhakrishna Kalchar, Ujire Ashok Bhat, Buchchan Shastri Karki, N S Bhat Baad, Mohan Hegde Kumta, MR Amachi, Vitla Shambhu Sharma, Bellare Rama Jois, Kondadakuli Ramachandra Hegade, Herriyanna Kota Padukare, Kodi Vishvanath, Suresh Manooru Padukare, Permude Jayaprakasha Shetty, Jayarama Kotari.
Yakshagana Mela or troupes
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There are about 30 full fledged professional troupes, and about 200 amateur troupes in Yakshagana. Professional troupes go on tour between November to May, giving about 180-200 shows. There are about one thousand professional artists and many more amateurs. Further there are off season shows during the wet season, the anniversary shows, school and college students Yakshagana and of course the Talamaddale performances. Yakshagana commercial shows witness 12,000 performances per year in Karnataka generating a turnover of Rs. Six crore.
|Town/Village||Date Started||Date of closure(if any)||Main sponsor||Thenkuthittu(T) or Badaguthittu(B)||Free or Ticket|
|Kumble||19th century||T||Donation|
|Karki Hasyagara Mela||1850|
|Kamalashile Mela||still performing||Sri Braahmi Durgaparameshwari Temple||B||Donation|
|Halady||1980s||Still performing||Halady temple||B||Free/donation|
|Amrutheswari||Early 20th Century||Still performing||Amrutheswari temple||B||Ticket|
|Dharmasthala Mela||19th Century||still performing||Sri Kshetra Dharmasthala||T||Devotees' donation|
|Kudlu Kutyala Mela||T|
|Ranjadakate mela||B||From Shimoga Dist.|
|Kateelu Mela||still performing||Durga Parameswari Temple||T|
|Hosanagara Mela||still performing||T|
|Perdoor Mela||1983-84||still performing||Sri Anathapadhmanaabha Temple||B||Ticket|
|Maranakatte mela||still performing||Sri Brahmalingeshwara Temple||B||Donation|
|Mandarthi Mela||1950s||still performing||Durgaparameswari Temple||B||Devotees' donation|
- This King of mysore was deaf and dumb, but knew several languages.
- Mysore kings gave patronage to various forms of performance arts
- Prof. Sridhara Uppura. 1998. Yakshagana and Nataka Diganta publications
- "The changing face of Yakshagana". Online webpage of The Hindu (Chennai, India: The Hindu). Retrieved 2007-09-06.
- "yaksha". Encyclopædia Britannica. Retrieved 2007-09-06.
- Dr. Shivarama Karantha, Yakshagana Bayalaata, Harsha Publications, 1963, Puttur, South Canara.
- Martha Bush Ashton, Bruce Christie (1977). Yakshagana, a Dance Drama of India. New Delhi: Abhinav Publications. p. 21,22,. Retrieved August 8, 2012.
- "The Hindu- Focus on rural art". Chennai, India: The Hindu. 2005-12-23. Retrieved 2007-09-06.
- The Hindu-Growing with tradition
- Pranesh, Meera Rajaram (2003) . Musical Composers during Wodeyar Dynasty (1638–1947 A.D.). Bangalore: Vee Emm. pp. 37, 38.
- "3-day festival to celebrate Karanth's birth centenary". The Times of India. 2002-12-20. Retrieved 2007-09-06.
- Brandon, James R. (ed.). The Cambridge guide to Asian Theatre (1997 (2nd reprint) ed.). Cambridge,UK: Cambridge University Press. pp. 115, 116. ISBN 9780521588225
- Hapgood, Robert. 1983. "Macbeth distilled: A Yakshagana production in Delhi," Shakespeare Quarterly, Vol. 31, No. 3. (Autumn, 1980), pp. 439-440.
- Dr. Achar, Palthady ramakrishna 2004 Janapada Parisara, Puttur, Supriya prakashana, P-68
- Narthaki.com, classical indian dance directory
- Prof. Sridhara Uppura. 1998.Yakshagana and Nataka Diganta publications
- Prof Sridhara Uppura, Diganta Sahitya publications, Managalore, 1998.
- Yakshagana Costumes of Karnataka | The Craft and Artisans
- Gosh, Banerjee, Sampa, Utpal Kumar; Banerjee, Utpal K., (2006). Indian puppets. New Delhi: Abhinav publications. p. 78. ISBN 9788170174356. Retrieved 16 August 2012.
- "Award for achievement". Online webpage of The Hindu (Chennai, India: The Hindu). 2006-03-07. Retrieved 2007-09-06.
- The Hindu-Yakshagana Kendra has effectively popularised the art form
- "Open study-chairs for research on Yakshagana". Online webpage of The Hindu (Chennai, India: The Hindu). 2007-07-09. Retrieved 2007-09-06.
- "Traditional touch in theatre". Online webpage of The Telegraph. The Telegraph. Retrieved 2007-09-06.
- Martha Bush Ashton, Yakshagana, Abhinav Publications, India; 1st edition (15 June 2003) ISBN 81-7017-047-8, ISBN 978-81-7017-047-1
- Neelavara Lakshminarayan Rao, Gorpadi Vittala Patil, Yakshagana Swabodhini, Published by Yakshagana Kendra, MGA college Udupi, India; 1st edition
- Yakshagana Shruti Software
- Tala demonstration by Chande Mahabhaleshwara. Mudugodu.
- Interview - on History and Development of Yakshagana (Informal).
- Yaksharanga Website
- Yakshagana Site-3
- Yakshagana Puppets
- Keremane Mela
- Udayavani - First look on Karnataka