Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Folk Dances Of India - West

Gendi : This dance from Madhya Pradesh is usually performed during the rainy season from June to August. The dancer, who has learnt to balance himself on the Gendi, can perform the dance even in water or on marshy surfaces. Children generally perform the dance as intense balance is required. The performers are colourfully attired with belts studded with cowrie shells around their necks. The Gendis are dyed in bright colours.

Bhagoriya: This dance is performed by the Bhils, a large tribe in Madhya Pradesh. It is performed by men and women wearing colourful costumes during Holi. This is a lyrical dance and is an occasion when many young men and women get to find their partners.

Jawar : Jawar is performed in the Bundelkhand area of Madhya Pradesh. It is a harvest dance reflecting the gaiety and joy of the farmers who have reaped a good harvest. The women carry baskets full of jawara (millet) on their heads and are able to balance these baskets while dancing. The accompaniments include a rich variety of percussion, stringed and wind instruments.

Garba : Garba, the leading dance of women in Gujarat, is performed in honour of the Goddess Amba. This fertility dance involves perforated earthen pots in which an oil lamp is placed symbolizing embryonic life. The pots are balanced on women's heads as they move around a circle, snapping their fingers and clapping their hands to produce a fast beat. When men dance, by singing and clapping, the dance is known as Garbi. Traditionally, the Garba was performed only at night and as a votive offering. In an evolved version, the dance can be performed for its own sake and at any time.

Dandiya Raas : Dandiya Raas is a very popular folk dance of Gujarat which is nowadays danced in every nook and corner of other parts of India too.Dandiya Raas is the most ancient dance of Gujarat and is popular among the urban and the rural folk alike.This folk dance, known as Raas, originated approximately 5,000 years ago. The performance is an all-time favourite dance of Gujaratis. It is usually performed during the festival of Navaratri.
Dandiya Raas is a simple, rhythmic dance performed by young people moving around in imaginary circles with measured steps to the beat of two dandiya (sticks) that each dancer carries in his or her hands. The beat for the dance is kept by striking the two sticks with each other in one's hands and sometimes with the sticks of the other dancer. The beat can even be maintained by clapping the hands. Ideally a circle of men move in either a clockwise direction while the circle of women move in an anti-clockwise direction or vice versa. The songs sung as an accompaniment are essentially amorous.

Dandiya Raas is a very energetic, colourful and playful dance providing a good opportunity to the young men and women for acting and exchanging messages through eye contact.

Kala : This dance is performed in Maharashtra on the birthday of Lord Krishna and is connected with the breaking of a dahi handi (pot of curd). The dance recreates one of the Lilas (stories) of the early life of Lord Krishna. A pot is tied to a rope and hung between two storeys of houses. The dancers then form a pyramidal structure and with arms stretched and holding each other's shoulders, tier upon tier is formed, until the boy who plays the part of Krishna can reach the handi. He then breaks the pot and lets the buttermilk and the kala (rice mixed with curd and condiments flow out).

Dindi : In the state of Maharashtra, religious devotional dances are called Dindi. The musicians for this dance comprise a 'Mridangam' player and a vocalist who give the dancers the necessary musical background. This dance is usually performed on the Ekadashi day in the month of Kartik.

Mando : Mando is a semi urban folk form, evolved by the Goan aristocracy. It begins on a slow and sad note but ends with a faster beat called Dulpod. Latter day compositions cover a variety of themes and moods distinct from the traditional compositions. Some of the other folk dances of Goa are, Ghode Modni (dances with effigies of horses), Dekhni, Dhangar, Tonyamel, Suvari and Jagar.

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Dances Of India

classical dances : Bharata Natyam | Kathakali | Kathak | Manipuri | Kuchipudi | Odissi | Mohini Attam
Folk Dances North : Bhangra | Dhumal | Rouf | Lama Dance | Pangi Dances | Losar Shona Chuksam | Raas | Gidda | Dhamyal | Duph | Lahoor | Dhurang | Mali Dance | Tera Tali |
Folk Dances East : Bihu | Naga Dance | Hazagiri | Bamboo Dance | Nongkrem | Thang-Ta | Karma | Ponung | Brita or Vrita | Hurka Baul | Kali Nach | Ganta Patua | Paik | Dalkhai |
Folk Dances West : Gendi | Bhagoriya | Jawar | Garba | Dandiya | Kala | Dindi | Mando |
Folk Dances South : Dollu Kunitha |Dandaria | Karagam | Kummi | Kuttiyattam | Padavani | Kolam | Lava | Nicobarese |

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