7 Oct 2023, 6.30pm
Venue: Mohammed Abdur Rahman Memorial Jubilee Hall, Kozhikode
''Rukmini Kalyanam'' Natakam at Kozhikode, Kerala
Bhagavata Mela' s entry into Kerala for the first time at the Golden
Jubilee Celebrations of Smt. Kalamandalam Saraswathi's Nrityalaya
I am happy to communicate with you for the first time regarding Melattur Bhagavata Mela and I introduce myself.
I am S.Kumar, grandson of Sri.V.Ganesa Iyer, Melattur who revived this
Divine Art Form in 1938. This Tradition fell into oblivion after the
death of 'Bharatam' Natesa Iyer in 1932. Trained by my father,
'Kalaimamani' G.Swaminathan, I have been actively participating in
Bhagavata Mela and performing main roles such as Hiranyakasipu,
Harischandran, Kamsan, etc since 40 years. And, I am the younger brother
of the legend of Bhagavata Mela, Sri.S.Natarajan.
My brother, Sri.S.Natarajan had given his life for this Art and had
taken it to new heights. Bhagavata Mela, what it is today, is all
because of him only. With his sudden demise, Bhagavata Mela has lost a
great leader and it has created a vacuum in the history of Bhagavata
Mela. But, as was the vision, this tradition must go on.
With immense support from Bhagavata Mela artists, musicians and others
including each one of you from the field, I have accepted the
responsibility of conducting this festival as promised to my grandfather
& mother. I have received many calls and messages from the legends,
seniors, artists from the field and well-wishers encouraging me to
shoulder the responsibility of conducting this great festival. They
further promised to extend their helping hand to support this cause too.
Hence, humbly, with the blessings of Lord Nrusimha and our elders
including Sri.S.Natarajan, here we are - our artists, musicians, my
brothers and myself with all of you - at A New Beginning AS A TEAM.
My brother walked in the footsteps of our illustrious grandfather and
father, both of whom, even while struggling to survive on a day-to-day
basis, had gone through pain and sufferings and sacrificed their life to
continue this tradition. Their commitment led my grandfather to sell 40
acres of his land, bit by bit to meet the expenses of conducting the
Annual Mahotsav of Bhagavata Mela. My father sold his grocery shop too
for the sake of Bhagavata Mela. To their credit, they had neither spoken
about it for the sake of publicity, name and fame nor demanded any
compensation or money at any point of time.
My Grandfather, when he was on his death bed, asked his grandsons to
swear in the name of Sri Lord Nrusimha that they would continue this
tradition as long as they are alive. We promised and within a few
minutes, he passed away.
My brother Sri.S.Natarajan inherited the tradition, streamlined it and
worked hard to find the support and patronage of many Institutions,
Corporates and individuals who by this time had learnt about Bhagavata
Mela and came forward willingly to help preserve this great art form.
This is what is called pure Bakthi and Love for both Art and God.
It is a blessing and our duty to remember and celebrate the phenomenal
leadership of my brother Sri.S.Natarajan, in whose memory and honour, we
will be presenting the 81st Year of Bhagavata Mela Nataka Mahotsav soon
once the prevailing situation improves. Previously, it was scheduled to
take place from 24th of May to 31st of May-2021 in connection with
Sri.Narasimha Jayanti Vasantotsav before Sri.Varadaraja Perumal
Sannidhi, Melattur but got postponed due to Pandemic.
We understand that it is not going to be easy and we are already facing
lots of practical problems. But as a team, we are mentally prepared to
overcome and conduct the Festival with HIS blessings. We believe in Lord
Nrusimha and HIS Powers absolutely and HE will lead and guide us.
This is the 81st Year of the Bhagavata Mela Nataka Mahotsav and the
first year under my leadership. Conducting it successfully as and when
it is possible, would ensure this Divine Art Form to go strongly into
the future. Hence, I request all of you to contribute in any way you can
so that we can jointly fulfill the commitment to God in making this A
Grand Success this year.
Donations can be sent in favour of 'Bhagavata Mela Natya Nataka Sangam'
to the address given below. You can also send it directly to the Bank
Account with complete details over mail.
'Kalaimamani' S.Kumar, 67, 'Sree Gananatha', South Street, Melattur, Thanjavur Dt. PIN: 614 301
Name of Account: Bhagavata Mela Natya Nataka Sangam
Current Account No: 209994367113
Bank: Equitas Small Finance Bank, Thanjavur Branch
IFSC Code: ESFB0001019
PAN No: AAETB30430Q
Kindly note that Bhagavata Mela Natya Nataka Sangam is the only
Authorized Trust to collect / receive donations for the 81st Year of
Bhagavata Mela Nataka Mahotsav.
Thanking you in advance and in anticipation of your blessings and
support. Looking forward to the pleasure of meeting and hosting you at
Melattur during the Mahotsav soon.
For & on behalf of Bhagavata Mela Natya Nataka Sangam
Mobile: +91 9994367113