Natyaratnam Kannan Pattali Smaraka Kathakali Trust

2014: Chemanjeri Kunhiraman Nayar

Veteran Kathakali exponent Guru Chemancheri Kunhiraman Nair, one of the oldest practitioners of the classical art form, died at his ancestral house in Koyilandy in north Kerala in the early hours of Monday, his family said. He was 105.

Active till his end, his portrayal of Lord Parasuram on stage when he completed 100 years in Kozhikode town hall enthralled art lovers of the state. His Krishna and Kuchela characters were favourites of classical dance connoisseurs. He was conferred Padma Shri in 2017 in recognition of his contributions to Kathakali.

He could not study beyond the primary level and was more drawn to the classical dance form. Leaving his home at the age of 14, he became a disciple of famous Kathakali maestro Guru Karunakara Menon. In 1944 he established the first classical dance school in Kannur, Bharatiya Nritya Kalalayam.

Later he set up an exclusive school for Kathakali at his native place and dedicated his life to his art. He developed his own improvisations and charmed the audience with his mudras, grace and innumerable disciples. He was in the news recently after he received Covid-19 vaccine at a private hospital in  Kozhikode. Governor Arif Mohammad Khan and chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan have condoled the death of the maestro.

dstack_admin By dstack_admin 2023/11/21

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