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Chendamelam.. Marketing Loudly into Ears ... | by -Reji
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Chendamelam.. Marketing Loudly into Ears ...

Shot at a busy commercial centre of Tiruvalla, Kerala as it was interesting to hear and watch their performance in front of the Jewellery Shop ( painted window behind the drummers). The Jewellers took to traditional Temple art of Chendavadyam (a loud rhythmic music made by this drummers in tandem) for attracting customers..


The Chenda is a cylindrical percussion instrument used widely in the state of Kerala.


A chenda is made out of a cylindrical wooden drum, and has a length of 2 feet and a diameter of 1 foot. Both ends are covered (usually with cow skin). The chenda is suspended from the drummers neck so that it hangs vertically. Using two sticks, the drummer strikes the upper parchment. This instrument is famous for its loud and rigid sound.


These instruments are associated with temples in Kerala. In the southern state, there are sub-sects within the caste system, such as the Marars and Poduvals, who by tradition are drummers attached to temples performing during the dawn and dusk poojas. Many of them make a living out of playing these instruments.


The percussion orchestras, panchavadyam, pancharimelam or pandimelam have more than 100 artistes performing at a time, creating a pyramid-like rhythmic structure of sound in a rising tempo. The popularity of these has not only sustained the art but also led to growing demand for these instruments.


The chenda is mainly played in Hindu Temple Festivals and as an accompaniment in the religious art forms of Kerala. The chenda is used as an accompaniment for Kathakali, Koodiyattam, Kannyar Kali, Theyyam and among many forms of dances and rituals in Kerala. It is also played in a dance-drama called Yakshagana which is popular in Tulu Nadu of Karnataka. It is traditionally considered to be an 'Asura Vadyam' which means it cannot go in harmony. Chenda is an unavoidable musical instrument in all form of cultural activities in Kerala.


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Taken on December 20, 2010