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Photographer's Note

For people avid of traditions, ceremonies and rituals, Kerala has a lot to offer.

It's through TrekEarth that I first discovered the Kathakali dramatic performance and its colourful characters. I had an instant fascination for these elaborate make-up and costumes and their photographic potential, so it became imperative to visit this region.

As I was gathering further information about Kerala, I've discovered Theyyam rituals, a living cult with several thousand-year-old traditions.

As most Theyyam ceremonies take place during the night, I would wake up at 2h00am and come to the different shrines where they would take place. As it is a religious ritual, it isn't touristic and I was the only foreigner among local worshipers, which would contribute to the feeling of being out of place, but also to the magic and euphoria.

These ceremonies aren't announced or publicized, so you have to get in contact with specific people to be able to assist to a Theyyam, and some are more secret than others.

These ceremonies are held at a specific period of the year, so you have to be there when it happens.

More theyyam photos here, here and here.

In workshop, a different view of the same performer.

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Additional Photos by Andre Roberge (InasiaJones) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1426 W: 152 N: 6228] (31448)
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