While the world moves ahead with Jazz, Hip-Hop, Classical, Salsa and other modern dance forms, there are people who love to stick to where it began for them. Do not confuse tribal dance with classical or folk dance, tribal dances are dances, which are performed by the indigenous tribes. India being a land where there is more number of cultures then the whole of Europe’s and America’s put together has many tribes. States of the northeast, Kerala, Karnataka, Rajasthan, Orissa and West Bengal have a large number of tribes and most of these tribes have their own dance forms. Their dance form can be as sophisticated as involving facial expressions and moving their body in the most complex manner to being as simple as swaying their body to the tune of local music.
The Santhali Dance is a tribal dance form, which is practiced by the Santhali Tribe of Jharkhand. This tribal dance is very popular and people from all over India come down to see the Santhali tribe perform it on festive occasions. Instruments like pipes, flute, drums and cymbals are used to generate music to dance with. The Santhali dance is usually performed in a forest are and it preaches about the forest goddess, nature and the strength that lies in being united.
The Dhimsa dance performed by the tribes of Orissa, eastern region of Andhra Pradesh and some parts of Madhya Pradesh. The dance is very simple yet beautiful which involves rhythmic movement of hands and legs. The dancers put on colorful dresses and ornaments. It is usually performed on occasions of weddings and festivals. The dance emphasizes on how mother earth takes care of us all and life is all about joy.
There are numerous such tribal dances performed all across India. The Lava dance from Lakshadweep, the Bihu from Assam, the Brato tribal dance from West Bengal are also some of the well-known tribal dances. Each of these tribal dance forms has their own unique traditions and basically come down to one core thought about how they reflect the life style of the tribes and their beliefs and thoughts.
India has many tribes and each have their distinct culture. These tribal dances infuse creativity with celebration and showcase the beautiful varied culture of India.