Melappadam literally means orchestra song in Kathakali terminology. It is the display of the skill of the musicians and the drummers in between purappadu and the commencement of the play during a full scale performance.
The musicians render six couplets of the 21st Ashtapadi of Jayadeva’s Geethagovindam in different ragas to the accompaniment of vigorous orchestra exhibiting all aspects of the skill of the artistes other than the dancers / actors. Manjuthara is another name for melappadam. It is being presented here by Kalamandalam Haridas.