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Balikkala: Re-staging a lost ritual art|Documentary

Balikkala is a ritual art, practiced by the Malayar community of northern Kerala. Performed for the health and well-being of women, it has gone nearly extinct. The Dalit art form was performed again after a gap of about 40 years by Chanthu Panikkar and the team in July 2023 for digital archiving under the ARPO LoreKeepers project.

The performance, which involved hours-long ballads praising five folk deities, was also an occasion for the artists to recollect memories associated with the ritual, which was last performed about 4 decades ago.

Watch the documentary about the ritual and its performers


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