Mridanga, known as deva vadya (drum of Gods) is one among the most ancient drums of India. In any Carnatic music concert, it is the main percussion instrument. It is being used as an accompaniment in percussion or string ensembles also.

Mridangamela is an awe- inspiring, flawless performance on the mridanga where the magical world of rhythm is being unleashed before the music lovers by a group of boys and girls, numbering from 10 to 100 or even more. Irrespective of their age - from 3 to 17 years - these young maestros perform together in the same tala and shruthi for hours and such a group performance on the mridanga without any accompaniment is unique in the contemporary world of music.

The famous ‘Korambu Mridanga Kalari’ of Irinjalakuda, Thrissur district in Kerala has the credit of introducing mridangamela to the world of music.

The beginning
Mridanga mela was developed by a great maestro of Mridanga, late Korambu Subrahmanian Namboodiri, the founder of Korambu Mridanga Kalari, Irinjalakuda, Thrissur (founded in 1980).

In 1978, His holiness Sri Jayendra Saraswathi Swamikal, head of Kanchi Math, visited the Peruvanam temple (Shiva temple at Cherpu, Thrissur, kerala).

Sri Subrahmanian namboodiri was an employee in that temple during that time and he requested Swami to watch the performance of his students on Mridanga. Swami happily agreed that and he came to see the program. When the young ones finished their performance on the mridanga, Swami became so happy and he blessed all of them. Swami asked Namboothiri to continue his mridanga classes and his pursuit of divine rhythms on mridanga as well, throughout his life.

Since then, hundreds of young boys and girls were given training on mridanga by Sri Namboodiri and he began conducting mridangamelas throughout Kerala.

In 1998, Sri Vikraman Namboodiri, third son and a gifted disciple of Sri Subrahmanian Namboodiri received the baton from his father and he started conducting mridangamelas in various venues in India and abroad as well.

He started travelling with his little mridanga maestros from place to place and stages to stages. Programs conducted in Delhi, Madhya Pradesh, Karnataka, Tamilnadu, Pondichery and Gulf Countries were all much appreciated by music lovers.

His efforts popularised mridangamela among music lovers all over the world. With the blessings of many great musicians, music lovers and artists, mridangamela has already been performed on more than a1000 stages and still continues its successful journey to more and more hits.

Special, in all aspects
Mridangamela marks a slight but sensible deviation from the original Carnatic tradition. The complex rhythmic pattern of Mridangamela has in it, a very special, fine fusion of Carnatic and Hindustani talas. Kerala’s mela sampradaya also has significant influence on the ebb and flow of the various intonations rendered during mridangamela.

Mridangamela is designed in a way that it is easily accessible and also enjoyable to absolutely anyone. Teaching method developed by the ‘Korambu’ family of mridanga Acharyas is very special that it enables younger ones to follow the lessons easily. Little ones are being guided very smoothly through the basic talas to the higher, richer elements in thaniyavarthanam (mridanga solo) like korappu, mora or koruva.

It is its fine design that makes mridangamela a delightful experience to audience of any kind including women and children. (Duration of the program varies from 30 minutes to 90 minutes).

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