Wednesday, April 17, 2024
India News

Dance of republic: Tribal, folk artistes put up a show | India News


NEW DELHI: Dressed in a stiff, barrel-shaped skirt adorned with intricate embellishments, Riva, a classical dancer from Manipur, described the experience of performing on Republic Day as surreal. “I was very nervous but thought this was my one chance to showcase the culture of my state,” said the 19-year-old.
Like Riva, there were 1,500 other dancers who were the cynosure of the parade crowd on Friday. They showcased 30 distinctive dance styles, including Kuchipudi, Kathak, Bharatnatyam, Satriya, Mohiniyattam, Odissi and Manipuri, besides contemporary and Bollywood dances.
Purva Rohidas Patil, an 18-year-old Kathak dancer, was dressed in an elegant Maharashtrian Kasta sari, eager to enthral the viewers. Having practised for the event for four months, Patil said, “To be able to perform on such a big stage is empowering for me. I was fascinated at having to dance before such a big crowd. Later, people approached us to have a selfie with them. I felt like a celebrity.”
Another eye-catching element of the parade unfolded as performers, adorned with 120 masks depicting tribal and folk arts, brought to life a rich cultural mosaic. Among the talented ensemble were 199 tri bal dancers and 486 folk dance enthusiasts. Each mask they wore was a unique symbol, adding depth and diversity to the cultural spectacle.
Sneha A Sangma, a 17-yearold from the West Garo Hills of Meghalaya, was proud at having highlighted the need to protect the Wangala dance. She said her village was eagerly waiting to watch their dance group live on television. This is the third year when, under an initiative of the Union culture ministry to protect cultural diversity, artistes have been performing folk dances on Kartavya Path.
Nivetha, who travelled from the Tirunelveli district of Tamil Nadu to perform the Karakattam, was overwhelmed by her first-time experience in the capital. She said, “The beauty of communication goes beyond language barriers. Every folk artist we have interacted with here spoke from the heart.”



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