Folk Dancer of Desert
Women are creator of music and dance
The Thar Desert of Rajasthan is India’s rich and ancient source of folk music and dance. In Rajasthan the traditional art forms are still strongly upheld and a new generation of young artists is now emerging. The society of Rajasthan, although caste orientated, has a vast treasure of folk arts including, in particular, music based on the system of “Jajmani” which binds patrons and musician families together for generations. The relationship between patron and musician can be traced back at least five hundred years. Music and dance is an integral part of the rich pattern of village traditions, which have developed over the centuries the long desert nights.
Women play important role in music world of desert. They are actual writer & composer of folk songs. Their songs contain information about jewelry, clothes, weather, beloved ones and about nature. Women are first Music & Dance teachers / Guru for a child.
Music of Rajasthan aim is to present talented DANCER OF DESERT to national and international festivals and events around the world.
Kalbelia is a nomadic community who sometimes introduces themselves as Naath, Jogi, Sapere and Sadhu. Their family business is to catch snakes. This comes in handy as they showcase a number of tricks using these snakes while giving spectacular shows in nearby villages and qasbas and at their Jajmaan’s place and thus earn livelihood for themselves. As the time changed they have made permanent lodgings outside the cities.
Pungi is a special instrument of Kalbelia community. They catch snakes with the help of pungi. They enchant the snake by playing this instrument and then catch it. They believe that the snake can never bite them and they also make ‘Surma’ using the snake’s poison . Due to the use of Surma they believe that they will never lose their eye sight.
Snake eyes of Kalbelia
The women of this community are expert in singing and dancing. In olden times the women use to sing and dance only on special occasions such as weddings, festivals etc. in their very own distinct style. As times changed these women started performing stage shows around the whole world and with it changed their dancing style as well as their attires. Their swaying dresses, made up of colourful beads give a distinct identity to the women of Kalbeliya community. What makes this attractive dress more interesting is that it is made by the Kalbeliya women themselves. A very interesting fact about them is that they never teach the folk arts to their children. They gain expertise in singing and dancing by watching the elders doing it at home.
Teratali Dance Video
As one can see a woman puts on vertically arranged vessels on head and skillfully balances them while executing dances movements in various ways. This act was traditionally performed as a vow for some sort of mediation by god or goddess by individual male or woman in villagers. But now it has become a skill for dance and moved to little acrobatics. There are particular groups which traditionally attached to this from of dance.
The songs sung with the dance comes from general repertoire of folklore. Desire for fast tempo, rhythm makes it interesting.
The popular ghoomar is the characteristic dance of the Bhils although it is especially associated with the royal ladies now.
As Bhils have remained loyal to the side of the Kachhwahas.The ghoomar dance is one of the legacies that they passed on to the Rajput royalty. Derived from the word ghoomna (pirouette), this is a very simple dance where the ladies, dressed in resplendent voluminous ghagras, move smoothly and gracefully in circles. The accompanying songs are sung alternately by both men and women, as the dancers move both clockwise and anti-clockwise. The effect of the free play of the folds of the ample and colourful ghagra is dazzling.
Although this is essentially a group dance, sometimes performers show-off their skill by dancing independently also.