Folk Musical Instruments of Karnataka

in Module
Published on: 01 June 2021

Shilpa Mudbi Kothakota

Shilpa is a filmmaker, theatre practitioner and singer. She has made films on agriculture, rural development and women's empowerment for the Karnataka State Department of Agriculture, the University of Agricultural Sciences, Samvada-Baduku and Karnataka Mahila Samkhya. In 2017, Shilpa along with her husband, Adithya Kothakota, founded Urban Folk Project.

Music and dance are important forms of religious and emotional expression in most cultures. India has a vast range of these forms, and Karnataka is perhaps a state that remains under-explored in this area. Art history sees that there has been a long tradition of making instruments from locally available materials which lend a unique quality to the music of each region. Each of these instruments also has origin stories that are attributed to mythological beings like kinnaras and Gandharvas to name a few. Karnataka is known for its cultural diversity and is known to be the place of origin of over 250 folk art forms. This module explores some of the folk musical instruments of Karnataka.