Hello, I am Leonie. I am volunteering in FSL-India in the PR and Media section.
On Thursday, 14th of December, the CEL volunteers and staff were invited to a Yakshagana; a traditional south Indian theatre form that combines dance, music, dialogue, costume, make-up, and stage techniques with a unique style and form.
The event was happening at one of the volunteer’s host family’s home. It started with a big lunch, which more than 600 people attended.
When we arrived, we were impressed by the size of the event, since the family had their whole garden decorated and numerous tables put up in line for everyone to eat their food on banana leaves.
Even though there were already a lot of tables, the lunch still had to be served in rounds; we were, therefore, part of the second round.
The second part of the festivities started in the evening when the actual Yakshagana started. For that, all the volunteers dressed up nicely in saree or churidar-kameez. In the beginning, we took part in a religious ceremony. After that, everyone could get some delicious dinner and have nice chats with each other. Then finally, the play was starting, so all the guests joined together in front of the stage to watch.
Since the play was in Kannada, we couldn`t understand everything very well, but out of the context we could interpret the story and after all, it was very enjoyable.
The next day, Gajendra also informed everyone about the story of the play and its meaning, which made us appreciate it even more.
All in all, we had a great time at the Yakshagana and appreciate very much that we could be part of this traditional event and learn more about the culture.