Some scholars attribute Buddhist origin to Jagannath. The 1st Jagannath temple is believed to have been built on the site of an old Buddhist temple where the tooth relic of the Buddha had been enshrined. The Ganga Kings (11 - 15th centuries) were devotees of Lord Vishnu and Lord Jagannath. Chodganga Deva, founder of the Ganga dynasty, continued the construction of the Jagannath temple and appointed Maharis to sing and dance as temple service. Reference to dance rituals at Jagannath temple can be found in the Skanda Purana (10-11th c AD). ('Dance Dialects of India', by Ragini Devi)

Kalamandalam Krishnan Nair was better known as Kunhikittan since 'Kunhi' stands for 'petit' and 'kittan' was the normal colloquial name for Krishnan in the villages situated in Kannur and Kasargod districts of Kerala. ('Remembering the Kathakali legend' by K K Gopalakrishnan, Nartanam, vol III, #3, p 8, July - Sept 2003)

The best compliment was paid to Ammanur Madhava Chakyar when the team performed in 1982 at the Festival of India in London. According to British critic Kenneth Rae, " of the bravest and most outrageous pieces of acting I have ever seen. Who else would dare take 15 minutes to die on stage and get away with it?"
(Excerpt from 'Into the world of Kutiyattam with the legendary Ammanur Madhavachakyar' by G Venu)

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