Chempada Melangal: Generally there are 7 types of melangal viz: Panchari, Champa, Chempada, Adantha, Anchadatha, Druvam and Pandy. The earlier 6 melams are called "Chempada melangal" and they are one way or other closely associated and the model is the premier one "Panchari". Of all "Pandy" stands distinctive. Two more melams, "Navam" & "Kalpam" were developed by a Maestro in the field Sri Kumarapuram Appu marar.
There are few artists to perform all these melangal at an equal ease with total dedication, interpretation, meditation, skill & talent.
Some of the past and present are : Pallavoor Appu Marar, Thripekulam Achuta marar, Chakkumkulam Appu Marar, Kachamkurichikannan, Kelath Aravindakshan, Pervanam Kuttan, Mattannur Sankarankutty (with out any prejudice or order)
Instruments: Chenda, Kurumkuzal, Kombu, Elathalam.
Pramanavadhya (Leading instrument): Uruttu Chenda
Role of each instrument in general:
"Uruttu Chenda" - To lead the orchestra.
"Veekam Chenda" - to keep the thalam
"Elathalam" - To support the Veekam Chenda
"Kombu & Kuramkuzal" To keep the orchestra with in the prescribed limits and to blend & balance.
The melangal are performed in a tight format without any compromise and each and every instruments has equally important role to perform and the conductor will see that all are in tune &time with one another.
The no: of Artists: Kurumkuzal & Kombu may be in equal numbers with "Uruttu Chanda", Elathalam must be in double and "Veekam Chenda" should be triple the numbers of "Uruttu Chenda". The ratio of "Veekam" to "Uruttu" may be 1:6 for magnificence.
The positions are arranged such way that to have a direct interaction between the artists. "Kurumkuzal" is holding the wand supported by the "Kombu" so both these artists must have direct Eye contact with the Leader.
Common features: All these Chendamelangal have common Features like same instruments are used, positions and duties are same. Performed in ever increasing tempo and the proportionally decreasing number of beats in the cycle. The role of the "Pramani" and the hierarchy are identical in vadhayam & melam.