Kuchipudi is the traditional dance of Andhra Pradesh which is known for its poise and belle.
History : Kuchipudi originated from a hamlet in Andhra Pradesh, called Kuchelapuri or Kuchelapuram, in the 3rd century B.C. This dance style, like many other classical dance forms, was initially presented at temples and was performed by the Brahmin men (known as Bhagavathalu)
The dancers embellish themselves with temple jewelries that are made from gold imitation with Kemp or Stones studded with it. Jewelries adorn the head, ear, neck, hands, fingers and the waist of female dancers. Male dancers are lightly ornamented.
The ornaments include Talay- saaman with surya and Chandra, Chutti, Maatal, long necklace (tanmani), and short necklace (addikai), kamar-patta, bangle, jhumki (kundalum), Gajjelu or nakle bell (salangai), Raakodi, kunjalam, etc.
The most popular Kuchipudi dance forms is the pot dance, in which a dancer keeps a pot filled with water on his/her head, while the feet are balanced on a brass plate. He/she moves on the stage, manipulating the brass plate with the feet kept on its rim and doing some hand movements, without spilling a drop of water on the ground. Bhama Kalapam, Gollakalapam, Prahlada Charitam, Sashirekha and Parinaya are some of the other famous dance dramas in Kuchipudi.
Kuchipudi shares many common elements with Bharatanatyam. In its solo exposition Kuchipudi numbers include 'jatiswaram' and 'tillana' whereas in nrityam it has several lyrical compositions reflecting the desire of a devotee to merge with God. In an era of the degeneration of dance due to exploitation of female dancers, an ascetic, Beyond the stylistic differences of Kuchipudi and Bharatanatyam steps, there are certain types of dances that are unique to Kuchipudi: Specifically there is the Tarangam which is unique in that t plate with two diyas (small oil-burning candles) in his or her hands while balancing a "kindi" (small vessel) containing water.
The Kuchpudi costumes look similar to Bharatnatyam costumes. Only difference is the Katcham that comes at the back of a Kuchipudi costume. A long pleat in the centre with a border and a blackkatcham with a side small fan makes a typical kuchipudi style costumes. Cross pleat costume: Cross pleats are used for both Bharatnatyam and Kuchipudi. This pattern is mainly formale dancers. This cross fan costumes can be used for devotional characters like Muruga & Krishna.
The male dancers are lightly ornamented. Thus we can say that the kuchipudi dance form is known for its grace and beauty which would be incomplete without its dressing style, costumes, makeup and its jewellery.
Ornaments used regularly in Kuchipudi dances are Jumka (earring with upward extension)Oddiyanam (waist band)Nathni (nose ring)Long Mala (long necklace)Short Mala (choker)2 Vaanki (arm bands)Chudiya (colored bangles to match your dress)Ghungroo (musical anklet with metallic bells)Mattal (forehead)Chandra (moon shaped hair ornament)Surya (sun shaped hair ornament)1 Red stick-on Bindi(a decorative mark worn in the middle of the forehead)