Burra Katha, a Folk Art form of Storytelling
Burra Katha was in news because one of the last exponents of Burra Katha passed away on 12 August 2014.
Burra Katha was in news because one of the last exponents of Burra Katha passed away on 12 August 2014. Burra Katha or Burrakatha is a Telugu art of oral storytelling. It is performed in Coastal Andhra region, Rayalaseema and Telangana.
The term Burra refers to tambura and Katha means a story. Thus, Burra Katha is an art of storytelling in which narrator plays tambura while narrating.
Burra Katha, a narrative art, consists of prayers, dance, songs, poems and jokes. The topic of the narrative would be a mythological issue or a social one.
Different names of Burra Katha
• In Coastal Andhra region, Burra Katha is known as jangam katha.
• In Rayalseema region of Andhra Pradesh, it is known by the name Tandana katha or suddulu.
• In Telangana, it is known as tamboorakatha or saradakatha.
Performers of Burra Katha
• The group of Burra Katha performers comprises of one chief performer and two co-performers.
• Burrakatha narrators are called Saradagallu.
• The chief storyteller is known as kathakudu who narrates the whole story while dancing and playing tambura, a musical instrument. He wears anklets while performing the Katha.
• The co-performers help the narrator by playing small drums called gummeta.
Popular performers of Burra Katha
• Pendyala Venkateswarrao
• Paruchuri Ramakotayya
• Kosuri Punnayya
• Kakumanu Subbarao
• Mahankali Lakshmi
• Moturi Udayam
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