Odisha is the land of diverse culture and rich tradition, with a great variety in languages, cuisine, music and dance. The performers of the state are recognized globally for their excellence and exquisite forms.
Here are Top 10 Dances in Odisha:
Odissi is not only one of the most important dance forms of the state, but also amongst the six famous classical dances of India, which are known around the world. The dance form narrates the story of the true and pure love of Radha and Krishna and is rooted in the ancient culture of the state, originating in the temples of Odisha.
Danda Nacha is one of the most popular dance forms in the western part of the state. This dance has a religious significance as it is devoted to Lord Shiva and Goddesses Kali. It is a part of the tradition of the state and is performed during a festival of thirteen days held in Odisha.
Featuring next on the list of top 10dances of Odisha is the famous martial dance called Chhau Dance, which is known for its vigor and energy. Practiced in the Mayurbhanj area of the state, the popular dance form was traditionally practiced by soldiers in order to enhance their fitness and energy levels. The dance is performed with swords and shields and accompanied by the rhythm of percussion instruments.
Koya Dance is a tribal dance, which is performed by both men and women together. Men play big drums during the dance performance while women wield special types of sticks, which are fitted with brass bells.
Another well known dance form of Odisha is Gotipua dance which literally means a single boy. As the name suggests, this dance is performed by a single boy. The story behind development of this dance form is that it came into practice when some people went against the devadasi tradition, under which women had to perform devotional dances in temples.
A rural form of tambourine dance is Changu dance, which is practiced in the tribal areas of Mayurbhanj, Sundergarh, Phulbani and Keonjhar. The dance is performed by women, while men sing and perform stunts in between. The dance is a part of the festive traditions of these tribes.
Dalkhai is the most famous dance form of the western part of the state and is performed on the occasion of Dussehra festival. The dance is performed by women while men join in playing music and drums. It is practiced in the tribes of Sama, Kuda, Mirdha and Binjhal.
Next on the list of top 10 dances of Odisha is the festive Naga Dance, which is a famous dance form of Puri district. The dance is performed by men, who wear elaborate costumes and heavy head gear. The steps are masculine and heroic.
Kedu Dance is a part of the culture of Kondha tribe and is performed during the Kedu festival, which is marked by the ritual of sacrifice. It is done for paying obeisance to the Dahrani Penu, who harbingers prosperity and good luck for the tribals.
Another popular dance form of the state is Ranapa, which is a part of the culture of the southern part of the state. It is performed on stilts and accompanies by the music of a drum, along with songs related to the childhood stories of Lord Krishna.
Some other well known dances of Odisha are Samprada, Juang, Kothisala, Ho and Paika. People from around the country come to this state to witness some of these glorious dance forms.