District soon to have performing arts centre

Ranga Kalakendram is being set up at a cost of ₹10 crore at Varkala

A centre for performing arts is coming up in the district to promote the State’s rich art and cultural heritage around the globe.

The Ranga Kalakendram is being set up at a cost of ₹10 crore at the popular tourist destination of Varkala.

The 13,000-sq ft centre in Kerala Vasthu style, located on two acres of land at the Varkala guest house under the Tourism Department, will be thrown open to visitors at the end of next month.

Built as per international standards, it aims to popularise the State’s folk arts, martial arts, culture, heritage, and tourism the world over.

A performance hall in ‘koothambalam’ style, ‘kalarithara,’ ‘thamarakulam,’ amphitheatre, facilitation centre, swimming pool are among the facilities arranged at the centre.

It will also have facilities for research in traditional arts and comparative study between traditional and modern arts. Arrangements have also been made to present traditional arts. Here, visitors, including those from abroad, can enjoy and study the State’s arts, including Sarpa pattu, thullal, padayani, agni kavadi, Arjuna nrithyam, chavittunatakam, oppana, margamkali, theeyattu, theyyam. Teachers too will be present to take classes.

The project is being implemented by Vision Varkala Infrastructure Development Corporation, with the Chief Minister as chairman, which has been formed for comprehensive development of Varkala. Architect B. Sudheer has designed the centre as per Hindustan Lifecare Ltd’s directions. A design committee, comprising artistes and officials, approved the design. Filmmaker Adoor Gopalakrishnan is the chairman of the governing body for the centre.

A huge mural adds to the centre’s attractions. The 2,000-sq ft mural has been drawn in four parts by the Arnamula Vasthu Vidya Gurukulam’s mural painting wing.

There is also a proposal to raise the centre to deemed university status by associating with the Singapore-based Association of Asia-Pacific Performing Arts Centre.

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