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Biography: Narayanan Kochugovinda Pillai

Born in 1917 in the village of Veninallur, Kerala, Shri Narayanan Kochugovinda Pillai better known as Ooyar Kochugovinda Pillai learnt Kathakali from Chathannur Velu Pillai, Chennithhala Kochu Pillai Panniker, and Kurichi Kunjan Panniker. He received lessons in Sahityam from Pallickal Moothala Keshava Pillai.

As a performer and later a teacher, Ooyar Kochugovinda Pillai made a significant contribution to the art of Kathakali. He has mastered and performed to acclaim roles such as Hamsam, Pushkaram, Rugmangadan, Karnan, and Krishnan. He has also taught a number of students who are now established Kathakali performers. Shri Ooyar Kochugovinda Pillai has been honoured with the Kerala Sangeet Natak Akademi Award in 1986.

Source: Akashvani Sangeet Sammelan Souvenir, All India Radio, 1992


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