Recently, Yakshagana mela, the Kateel Durgaparameshwari Prasadita Yakshagana Mandali, in Dakshina Kannada will revert to all-night shows from January 14, after the High Court of Karnataka gave the go-ahead for the same last month subject to adherence to noise pollution rules.


  • The mela, comprising six troupes, had switched to shorter performances in the 2022-23 season due to a government circular restricting loudspeaker in Yakshagana performances between 10 p.m. and 6 a.m.
  • The troupe was allowed to perform short shows until 12:30 am, but a resident of Bengaluru challenged this decision in court.
  • The HC allowed the mela to perform from dusk to dawn adhering to the Noise Pollution (Regulation and Control) Rules, 2000, after counsel for the petitioner gave an undertaking that they would adhere to the decibel norms.

Kateel Yakshagana mela

  • Yakshagana is a traditional folk-dance form popular in Coastal Karnataka.
  • The Kateel Durgaparameshwari Prasadita Yakshagana Mandali is a century-old Yakshagana troupe in Dakshina Kannada, Karnataka, India. 
  • It is also known as the Kateel Mela. 
  • The troupe performs on request by devotees who have taken a vow (Harake) to arrange a show of Yakshagana for fulfillment of a desire or as a service.
  • It is a rare combination of dance, music, song, scholarly dialogues, and colorful costumes. 
  • Traditionally, men portray all roles, including the female ones, though women are now part of Yakshagana troupes. 
  • A typical troupe consists of 15 to 20 actors and a Bhagawatha, who is the master of ceremonies and the main storyteller. 

Elements of Yakshagana:

  • The Act: Epic tales from Ramayana or Mahabharata come alive through short sub-stories called Prasangas. Talented artists perform on stage, accompanied by the lead singer’s commentary and traditional music.
  • The Music: Chande drums, harmoniums, maddales, taalas, and flutes create a vibrant soundscape.
  • The Dress: Elaborate costumes with large headgear, colorful faces, and musical beads showcase the performers’ dedication and strength.
  • The Troupes: Renowned Melas like Saligrama, Dharmasthala, Mandarthi, and Perduru keep the tradition vibrant throughout the year.

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