3. Localisation of a national tradition (12-14c.CE)
Kulasekhara had a finer aesthetic sense. This is reflected in all his innovations. Many of his successors failed to imbibe the same spirit. Moreover, his refined stage was confined to his capital and its surroundings. The powerful Northern settlement did not approve him .The tradition there was more logo-centric as is evident from the champus and other literary works. This Chellur tradition was not friendly with the Mahodayapuram practices due to political reasons . After the fall of Chera empire (12.c.CE) both the streams got merged. The eloquent silence of Kulasekhara was mixed up with the loquacious verbosity of the North. The emergence Malayalam language became a good excuse for the protagonists of Chellur. The nanaaloka-laymen- claimed a larger share. All these were at the cost of the aesthetics of Kulasekhara. These developments brought a sea-change on the Kerala theatre. Malayalam language was introduced to the Sanskrit stage. Vidushaka’s role was inflated beyond limits. His humour, wit and criticism endeared him to the masses. He occupied the centre-stage pushing back even the hero of the play.
The indigenous practices prevailed in Kerala also influenced the performance at this stage. Many found a place on stage adding spectacle to the whole performance. Malayalam language used by Vidushaka and the home-grown practices virtually localised the national tradition of Bharata’s theatre.