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Ulsavam (Festival) after Dussehra in Vadakanchery, Kerala

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Published on 19 Mar 2007

Dussehra, also called Vijaya Dasami in Tamil, is one of India's two major Hindu festivals.

On the day after Dasami (also called Eka Dasi, or the eleventh day after the new moon), my father's village of Vadakanchery, Kerala, has a big festival, and a parade with elephants down the street from one temple to the other.

It's a great time to see one of Kerala's great folk art forms, called Pancha Vadyam (or "five instruments"). Featuring three different types of drum, horns, and the conch shell (and the bells that are common in Hindu religious music), it really shows off the great syncopated rhythms of south Indian music.

I took the footage for this (edited) video on Ekadasi, 2006 (Oct. 3, 2006) while I was visiting Vadakanchery with my sister and daughter.

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