It was a festive atmosphere at the Peringode High School grounds as 302 students and alumni performed the ‘panchavadyam’ for three-and-a-half hours at a stretch.
The alumni, who are employed in different parts of the country and abroad, came down to the school to participate in the ‘panchavadyam’ after rehearsing it for the past several days.
A multitude of people rushed to witness the event, and the police had to keep them at bay.
“The Peringode School students, who are known for their expertise in ‘panchavadyam’, had bagged the first place in the state-level youth festival 33 of the 37 times it contested,” said committee convener C Kunhunni.
“In connection with the school centenary, the locals and the school management had organised a mega ‘panchavadyam’ involving 302 selected alumni and students even though over 1,200 students have learnt ‘panchavadyam’ over the years at the school,” he said.
Though the function was supposed to begin at 2 pm, because of the delayed arrival of Tourism Minister A P Anil Kumar, the ‘panchavadyam’ could begin only at 3.10 pm, and it extended to nearly 6.45 pm.
P P Peter, an official of the Limca Book of World Records, was at the school to witness the show.
Among the 302 artistes, there were 80 thimmilas, 81 elathalams, 70 kombu, 50 madhalams, 10 shankus and 11 edakkas.
The artistes stood in three long rows. There were huge pandals on either side of the artistes to accommodate the public. Despite the rain in the morning, the pleasant climate made the people enjoy the show. The presence of gurus of various instruments added glitz to the programme.
Mattannur Sankarankutty Marar, Peruvannam Kuttan Marar, Annamanada Parameswara Marar, Trikkur Rajan, Cherpulassery Sivan, Kalamandalam Narayanan Nambisan, Sadanam Sreedharan, Sadanam Vasudevan, Edappal Appunni Nair, Kalamandalam Narayanan Nair and Kalamandalam Prabhakara Poduval were present.
The gurus who taught the students at the school over the years - Valapaya Chandran Marar, Eravath Appu Marar, K adavallur Gopalakrishnan, Kummath Raman, Vellathiruthy Unni Nair, Vellathiruthy Prabhakaran Nair, Thrithala Kesavadas and Thrithala Shankara Krishnan were also honoured on the occasion.
Tourism Minister Anil Kumar said that art forms like ‘panchavadyam’ should be encouraged and preserved as it signifies the state’s culture.