Madras, India » Entertainment » Festivals

Chennai (formerly known as Madras) is home to the Tamil movie industry. Tamil movie industry is also known as Kollywood. Most of the movie studios are situated in and around Kodambakkam. The name Kollywood is derived from the word Kodambakkam. In Kollywood, more than 150 Tamil movies are produced every year. Chennai is also an epicentre for Dramatics. Theatres organise popular genres like Tamil plays, English plays, political satire, slapstick comedy, history, mythology.

The most important festival of all is Pongal which is celebrated over five days in January. April 14th is considered to be Tamil' New Year's Day. It signifies the commencing of the Tamil year. Chennaites celebrate almost all major religious festivals such as Deepavali, Eid and Christmas.

Cultural events

The Chennai Music Season (formerly known as Madras Music Season) is the largest cultural annual event in Chennai. It includes performances by hundreds of artists. Bharatanatyam is a classical dance form of Chennai. It has a vibrant theatre scene.

Fairs and festivals

Alike the national festivals - Independence Day and Republic Day and religious festivals - Diwali, Holi, Navaratri, Eid-ul-Fitr, Eid-ul-Adha, Muharrum, Birthday of Prophet Mohammed, Christmas, Easter, Good Friday etc. a large number of festivals and fairs are celebrated in Chennai throughout the year. Also, Chennaites celebrate festivals like Mamallapuram, Kanthuri, Pongal, Chennai Music and Dance Festival with great enthusiasm in Chennai city. The floating festival in Mylapore is equally famous.

It is the harvest festival of thanksgiving to the Sun, Earth and the Cow. It is celebrated in January for three days. People offer sugarcane, turmeric, sheaves of paddy, newly prepared jaggery, vegetables and pulses to the Sun god, the earth and the cow.

Karthikai Deepam
This festival is celebrated on full moon day in November – December. It is a festival full of lights with lamps and firecrackers.

Brahmotsavam Festival
Brahmotsavam festival celebrated at the splendid Kapaleeswarar temple at Mylapore creates a basis of attraction to the pilgrims from far and near. The said festival is celebrated for ten days in the Tamil month of Panguni.

Tourist Fair
The Tamil Nadu Tourism Development Corporation is the one that organises this colourful Trade and Industrial Fair in Chennai. The exhibition puts forth the cultural wealth of the state, places of tourist interest, economic scenario and much more in multitudinous forms and colours.

Chennai Music and Dance Festival
Chennai music and dance festival is a celebration of classical music and dance of South India. Many renowned, as well as up-coming artists, perform in this festival.

Vinayak Chaturthi
The elephant-headed god - Lord Ganesh or Vinayak, is among the most worshipped deities of the state. The festival is celebrated in September. The celebration ends on the tenth day. On this auspicious day, people chant Lord Vinayak's name carrying his idols in a procession. Later those idols of Lord Vinayak are submerged in water in wells, lakes, rivers or oceans.

Aruvathimoovar Festival
Every year in the Tamil month of Panguni, to honour the 63 shivite saints, who lived in devotion & penance, a very colourful procession of 63 bronze statues of these saints is carried out through the streets of Mylapore, Chennai.