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  YAKSAGANA

K. SHIVARAMA KARANTH

Foreword by H. Y. SHARDA PRASAD

1997, 252pp., line drawings, col. illus., appen., index ISBN: 81-7017-357-4: Rs. 450(HB)


One of the theatre forms of Karnataka generally described as folk but processing a strong classical connection, is the Yaksagana.  Although the name signifies the music of celestial beings, Yaksagana is an amalgam of the sky with the earth.  There is both mystery and robustness about this form in which singing and drumming merge with dancing, and words with gestural interpretation, and players clad in costumes of striking colour and contours.

The author was the foremost authority on Yaksagana and had been working on all its aspects, namely dance, music, and literature, since 1930.  He has spent decades travelling to remote villages within Karnataka to inspect and study every Yaksagana manuscript, the earliest going back to 1651A.D. With his fine literary judgement and aesthetic sensibility, he has traced the changing trends in the performance of Yaksagana.  He has put together his findings in this work in English.  The present volume is a revised edition of his earlier book, with additional material and illustrations.

 

K. SHIVRAMA KARANTH (1902-1997) was one of the most arresting personalities in the literary and theatre world of India.  his interests have been vast and varied; he was a novelist, playwright, essayist, encyclopaedist, cultural anthropologist, art historian, lexicographer, populariser of science, and environmentalist.

Besides honorary doctorates from several Indian universities and fellowships from two national academies -- the Sahitya Akademi, he has received the Jnanpith Award in 1978, Dadabhai Nauroji Award ad Tulsi Samman in 1990. He has over 150 publications to his credit.  His works have been widely translated into several Indian languages and filmed as well.


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