This classical dance form of Kerala was first performed by women in temples,
over a thousand years ago, as an offering to God, their beloved. The movements
may appear simple, but effort is required to capture the grace, suggestive of
ocean waves, as seen in goddess Mohini, the Enchantress. This dance form exudes
enchantment grace and passion. Mohiniyattam is a fusion of ' Bharathanatyam '
and ' Kathakali ', as it combines the graceful elegance of Bharatanatyam and
dynamism and vigour of Kathakali. The performances are done only by women. In
Mohiniyattam, the Lasya element of dancing is predominant, and the mood created
is Sringaram (erotic) Mohiniyattam literally means the 'Dance of the
Mohiniyattam in Kerala took shape in the tradition of Devadasi dance and grew
and developed a classical status. The word 'Mohini' literally means a maiden
who excites desire or steals the heart of the on looker. It is a solo female
dance (in a single costume ) in which the striking features is the musical
melody and rhythmical swaying of the dancer from side to side and the smooth
and unbroken flow of the body movement. The dance is focused essentially on
feminine moods and emotions.