Higher Studies in Music


Mohiniyattam: 𝐓𝐡𝐞 Classical dance 𝐨𝐟 Kerala

Kerala; the God’s Own Country has its own intricate solo dance form Mohiniyattam. Mohiniyattam truly depicts as the dance of ‘Mohini’, the celestial enchantress of Hindu mythology. It’s an Indian classical dance form that portrays love and devotion to God. Mohiniyattam traces its origin in the temple of Kerala where a community of female dancers of temples elevated the temple’s rituals by adding their graceful expressive gestures to the mantras chanted by the priests.

Music Meleti brings you the Mohiniyattam foundation course, commencing this October, promising aspirants the fundamental techniques of the dance of Mohiniyattam. This classical dance that originated in the South-Western coastal belt of India, manifests the essence of grace and the feminine principle through movement features such as continuity and flow, circularity, and grounded-ness.

The course will begin with preparatory exercises to facilitate the body to imbibe the Mohiniyattam language and will cover the “chuzhippus” (the circular exercises of the torso), and the “chuvadusadhakams” (the body movement exercises combined with the footwork).

Following this, the basic movement motifs in the dance known as adavus will be taught. A unique aspect of the course is that the best movement practices of distinct schools of Mohiniyattam will be covered.

While inculcating the technique of the dance form, as a physical practice the movement sequences will also:

  • improve coordination, balance, and sense of rhythm
  • create greater body awareness through posture and alignment
  • improve flexibility and help to develop core strength
  • enable grace of movement
  • learn precise techniques of different movement patterns created by the body in space
  • Increase flexibility and stamina through stretching and dance exercises.


The course will also cover the basic hand gestures used in classical dance, preparing the student for the more advanced learning of the gestural language used in the dance. It will initiate students into the rhythmic patterns used through the recitation of the chorus or syllables used in rhythm.

Further, Mohiniyattam is also characterized by an emphasis on the eyes and facial expressions prompted by the total involvement of the mind. Exercises for the eyes and facial features to improve mobility and basic exercises in abhinaya will be covered. These exercises will encourage learners to use their imagination and enhance the expressivity of the face.

As music meleti courses offer one-to-one live sessions with the instructors, they will also go above and beyond to help the dedicated aspirants. As you master the fundamentals of the course, the instructors will introduce an advanced form of the art that includes shlokas and one or more movement segments are known as jathis or a cholkettu, an invocatory dance form.


Dr. Mythili Anoop

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