The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) is planning to include Ramlila in the list of art forms that need immediate attention. UNESCO has asked the Culture Department of Uttar Pradesh to submit a proposal on how 'Ramlila' can be revived and culturally preserved as an art form. (link)
Ramlila literally means ‘Ram’s play.’ It is a performance of the epic Ramayana in the form of a series of scenes that include song, narration, recital and dialogue. There are more than 25 different styles of Ramayana. Each style reflects the tradition and culture of the place of its origin. Some of the important Ramililas include Chattisgarh, Bundelkhandi, Assamese, Awadhi, Bhojpuri, Maithili, Braj and Karnatak. There is also an interesting puppet version of the Ramlila.