The ramacharita manas is a 400 year old text written by Gosai Tulasidas. This text is very rich because it has been compiled with the blending of literary and oral traditions.

The performance of Ramayana was based on oral traditions and not the parameters of Sanskrit drama. The first mention of a Rama based theme is in the Harivamsham, that was based on valmiki Ramayana

More popular forms came about from Mahanataka or Hanumanataka. This follows the tradition of Ramakatha again. Saradatanaya in his bhavaprakashana calls Mahanataka as samarga or the tradition that includes, music and dance. It is different in the sense it uses prakrit, dance, and music extensively in addition to philosophical rendering from Valmiki Ramayana. This was in the 10 -12th century. after which it faded.

The revival of Ramakatha has occurred again in the 14th century.