Photo Credit : historicalindianculture
Mohini the temptress, is a recurring character in Hindu mythology. Attam means dance. It is seductive dance performed by women, sensuous in its appeal. In technique Mohiniyattam somewhere between Kathakali and Bharathanatyam, lyrical in the extreme key note is coquetry. The symmetrical patterns of emotion flow in balanced nuances with smooth footwork, somewhat quickened body movements and special music. Parallel to the Bharatnatyam of Tamil Nadu, solo Mohiniyattam dance is performed only by women.
The music is classical dramatic as the name implies. It is the dance of the charmer. Its origin is a matter of conjecture. But it retains a lovely fusion of the parallel streams of dance in the eastern and western regions of South India. Combining the formal grace and elegance of Bharathanatyam, with the earthy vigour and dynamism of kathakali. The petalled nritha hands of the one with the wide stance of the other, the delicate expressions of the one with the stylized eye movements of the other, it co-ordinates the instinct with charm, subtle allure and seductive appeal. In the rendering of this style there is enchantment, grace, delicacy and passion tow and Kathakali. The lasya of Mohiniyattam and the thandava of Kathakali are well mixed in the dance sequence of Meenakshi natakom. Even the Elakiattom of Kathakali, male characters have to be done by Meenakshi in Meenakshi natakom. The songs are all a mixture of Tamil and Malayalam. The make-up and costumes bear considerable resemblance to that in Kathakali and the characters are all allowed to speak.