Poorakali, a folk dance popular among the Thiyyas of Malabar, is conducted in the Bhagavathy temples of northern Kerala
. It is performed as a ritual offering during the month of
(March - April). In Poorakali, performance is done by a group of 10 to 15 persons who dance around a nilavilakku
. The dancers are specially trained and often experienced in Kalaripayattu
, one of the ancient martial arts of Kerala. Each performance has eighteen different stages with characteristic rhythm and a complimentary song with or without musical accompaniment.