8 Popular Folk Dances of Chhattisgarh (2023)
Chhattisgarh is one of the most ancient and fastest developing state in the country of India. Sharing its borders with several major Indian states like Maharashtra, Telangana, Andhra Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh, the state of Chhattisgarh is not just popular for its rich heritage but also because of the fact that the culture of the state is immersed in a plethora of exciting dance forms. The credit for this vast variety of dance forms can be dedicated to the large number of tribes that reside in this expansive state together in harmony. Over the span of many years, the tribal population of Chhattisgarh has managed to develop a plenty of native indigenous folk-dance performances based upon their cultural beliefs. You will be pleased to know that most of the Chhattisgarh folk dance forms are performed for denoting the change of seasons, as part of rituals or are performed in reverence for the gods. To make these performances even better, special costumes as well as accessories are designed for them. If you wish to know more about the folk dances of Chhattisgarh, then you have arrived at the right place. In this article, we have listed some of the top folk dances of Chhattisgarh for you. Continue reading!
8 Popular Folk Dances of Chhattisgarh
- Saila Dance: This is one of the many popular folk dances of Chhattisgarh which is renowned for its unique style. This folk dance is usually performed by boys after the harvest season ends. It is in the month of Aghan, that the villagers go to the nearby villages and perform the remarkable Saila dance. In fact, the group of saila dancers go to each and every house of the village to perform this beautiful dance. As a token of gratitude, the villagers give paddy to all those who participate in the performance of the saila dance. Also, another thing you should know about the Saila dance is that in its simplest form, this folk dance of Chhattisgarhis also performed as the Dasera dance. This dance style is usually performed before the auspicious festival of Diwali by the Baigas. The dancers have small sticks in their hands and in the dance style, this stick is struck next to the stick of the person who is dancing next to them. During the dance, the performers move in circles in clockwise direction and then they turn around to move in anti-clockwise direction.
- Sua Nacha: Also known by the name of Parrot dance generally, this is another popular folk dance of Chhattisgarh that is usually performed on the occasion of Goura’s marriage. Those of you who are wondering the reason behind this unique name given to the Sua Nacha folk dance, let us tell you why it is called so. The women perform this folk dance while keeping a parrot in the centre, which obviously has grabbed the centre of attention in this extraordinary name. Though a bit simple, but the fun, energy and zest with the dance performance move is enough to make you adore it. The performers sing and dance in beautiful styles which is not only entertaining but total fun too. If you are going to witness this epic dance form, then you should know that this dance style is best enjoyed when accompanied by a laud applause from the audience. So, don’t forget to clap out loud to cheer up and boost the performers.
- Karma Dance: This folk dance of Chhattisgarh is usually performed by the tribal groups of the state such as Gonds, Oraons, Baigas and so on. If you are wondering whether this folk dance is also performed on a special occasion, then your guess is right. This dance form is performed to mark the end of the rainy season and the beginning of the beautiful spring season. Hence, this dance form is bound to bring a lot of happiness and excitement among the locals. Both men and women of the villages participate in this dance performance. There is even a lead singer in the team of performers for Karma dance. If you wish to experience the raw tribal culture of Chhattisgarh at its best, then watching the Karma dance performance is one of the best ways to do so. This tribal dance form is a true unexplored beauty of the region.
- Panthi Dance: The folk dance serves as one of the most vital forms of entertainment and is a display of the culture for the local people of the region. When talking about the top folk dances of Chhattisgarh, one can definitely not rule out the Panthi dance. This dance form is not only one of the most significant forms of folk dance of this area but is also considered as a prominent custom or ceremony of the Satnami community of Chhattisgarh. This dance form is often performed by the community during the celebration of the anniversary of birth of their Guru Ghasida which takes place in Maghi Purnima. If you witness the Panthi dance performance, you yourself will be able to see the rich cultural heritage as well as the traditional legacies of the tribal groups of the Durg region reflected in the performance. The people try their best and represent themselves through this form of dance. Like any dance form, this one is also a combination of a plethora of steps and patterns. However, the thing which makes it unique is the fact that it denotes the teachings and sayings of its holy master.
- Gendi Dance: Of all the folk dances of Chhatisgarh, the Gendi dance form is considered to be the most fun and exciting to watch. The thing which makes this dance form so unique and special is that during the performance, the dancers are mounted high on two long bamboo poles or any other firm pole. Moreover, it is after mounting on that high pole, that they maneauver through the messy crowd of other Gendi mounted performers. The best part of the Gendi dance is watching the performers banging the pole on the ground and at the same time keeping an excellent balance while swaying with the different tribal acoustics and percussions. For those of you who are pondering about the name of the dance form, the word Gendi literally means pole, which again revolves around the central attraction of the performance. The reason why this folk dance of Chhattisgarh has managed to remain a favorite among people is because over the years, this dance form has successfully kept the unique tribal tradition alive.
- Pandavani: Pandavani dance form is another unique folk dance of Chhattisgarh. You will be surprised to know that this folk dance is often referred to as the dark horse of the Chhattisgarh folk dance. Another interesting this about the Pandavani dance form that sets it apart from others is through the performance, the dancers try to portray the account of Pandavas, the main characters of the epic battle of Mahabharata. It is this very fact that people from far and away come to watch this dance performance. Teejan Bai is well known in the nearby areas as an efficient artist of the Pandavani dance form. You will be pleased to know that for her excellent skills in the Pandanvani dance, she has even received several accolades including the prestigious Padma Bhushan, Padma Shri and so on.
- Raut Nacha: Since the main performers and artists of the Raut nacha are the cowboys of the state, this folk dance of Chhattisgarh is also known by the name of the Cowherds Folk Dance. If you are aware about the vast Hindu mythology, then you would know that the Yadavas or Yaduvanshis, who are a popular Chhattisgarh caste, are believed to be the descendants of one of the prime Hindu Gods, Lord Krishna. The Raut Nacha dance form shows scenes from the famous fierce battle between the evil King Kansa and the cowboys of the region. In this performance, the Yadava cowboys represent Lord Krishna. The main message that this Chhattisgarh’s folk – dance delivers is that of the ancient truth of the triumph of good over evil. This dance form is usually performed on the occasion of the ‘Dev Udhni Ekadashi’ as there is a strong belief among the locals that this is an auspicious date when the almighty himself is awake and present.
- Rahas Dance: When talking about the list of top folk dances of Chhattisgarh, one can surely not complete the discussion without mentioning the Rahas Dance. A prominent folk dance performed in the Dhamtari district of the Chhattisgarh state, this dance style is a common occurrence in a plethora of significant festivals celebrated in the state. The main theme which the dance represents is that of Rasa Lila of Lord Krishna and his beloved Goddess Radha. The rural people are the artists of the dance from and they represent the dance with great fun, frolic and enthusiasm. The dancers wear traditional hats and costumes during the performance.
The fast movements, excellent choreography and special costumes combine together to create a spectacular folk-dance performance. Make sure to watch one in Chhattisgarh!
Q1. Which Is The Most Popular Folk Dance Of Chhattisgarh?
Ans. Saila dance is the top Chhattisgarh folk dance.
Q2. What Is Chhattisgarh Famous For?
Ans. The state is popular for its rich cultural heritage, natural beauty, vast wildlife and many other things.
Q3. How Is The Chhattisgarh Cuisine?
Ans. The state offers a vast range of delicious cuisine which is greatly delicious and healthy.