Born in 1936 in Palakkad district of Kerala, Shri Kottakkal Sivaraman studied Kathakali at the P.S.V. Natyasangham, Kottakkal, under the renowned guru Vazhenkada Kunchu Nair for about twelve years. Grad- uating into a consummate performer, he came to be known for his special ability in enacting female roles. Since his first major perform- ance in 1957, Shri Kottakkal Sivaraman has earned wide renown as an exponent of streevesham in Kathakali. He has excelled in the roles of Damayanti, Draupadi, and Kunti, and has performed alongside renowned masters like Kalamandalam Krishnan Nair and others. He has performed extensively within the country and abroad. Shri Kottakkal Sivaraman has been honoured by various arts organizations of Kerala. He received the Kerala Kalamand- alam Award in 1990 and the Kerala Sangeet Natak Akademi Award in 1996. Shri Kottakkal Sivaraman receives the Sangeet Natak Akademi Award for his contri- bution to Kathakali.