Pulikkali festival – Kerala
- Pulikkali is a colorful recreational folk art from the state of Kerala.
- It is performed by trained artists to entertain people on the occasion of Onam, an annual harvest festival, celebrated mainly in Kerala.
- On the fourth day of Onam celebrations (Nalaam Onam), performers painted like tigers and hunters in bright yellow, red, and black dance to the beats of instruments like Udukku and Thakil.
- Literal meaning of Pulikkali is the ‘play of the tigers’ hence the performance revolve around the theme of tiger hunting.
- The folk art is mainly practiced in Thrissur district of Kerala.
- The origin of Pulikkali dates back to over 200 years, when the Maharaja Rama Varma Sakthan Thampuran, the then Maharaja of Cochin, is said to have introduced the folk art, who wanted to celebrate Onam with a dance that reflected the wild and macho spirit of the force.