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Heike Moser - Waldschmidt-Price

Felicitation by Yogendra
(February 2009)

German indologist from Tübingen Heike Moser received the Ernst-Waldschmidt-Price worth 5000.- € which is only awarded once in five years for her research on the South Indian Sanskrit-dance-theatre Kutiyattam. Kutiyattam, an earlier form of the better known Kathakali-theatre, distinguishes itself by a complex language of hand-gestures and a highly stylized facial expression.Kutiyattam has been handed down in Kerala over centuries and it is the only pre-modern form of theatre in India in which both women and men take part together as actors on stage. Heike Moser has not only done scientific research on Kutiyattam but also, after studying Indology and Ethnology and doing a basic training in Bharata-Nayam, learnt the dance herself and, as the first non-Indian ever, reached stage maturity. Her comprehensive field-material is available on the internet in a database about the sanskrit-theatre. Since 2008 Heike Moser, now 38 years old, is a scientific coordinator for the newly founded Asia-Orient-Institute of the University of Tübingen and staff-member in the Exzellenzcluster "Asia and Europe in a Global Context - Shifting Asymmetries in Cultural Flows" of the University of Heidelberg.