Indian folk and tribal dances are simple dances, and are performed to express joy and happiness among themselves. Folk and tribal dances are performed for every possible occasion, to celebrate the arrival of seasons, birth of a child, a wedding and festivals. The dances are extremely simple with minimum of steps or movement. The dances burst with verve and vitality. Men and women perform some dances exclusively, while in some performances men and women dance together. On most occasions, the dancers sing themselves, while being accompanied by artists on the instruments. Each form of dance has a specific costume. Most costumes are flamboyant with extensive jewels. While there are numerous ancient folk and tribal dances, many are constantly being improved. The skill and the imagination of the dances influence the performance.
Bardo Chham is a folk dance of Arunachal Pradesh, Bardo Chham depicts the victory of good over evil. The dance has an interesting background. According to the local beliefs, forces - both good and evil, rule mankind. The folks believe that in one year, twelve different types of stupid things, representing evil forces, appear each month and get together. The Sherdukpens mask themselves representing the different animals and dance to the accompaniment of drums.
Bagurumba' is a folk dance of indigenous Bodo tribe in Assam and Northeast India. It is a traditional dance which is traditionally inherent to one generation to another generations. The Bodo women perform the Bagurumba dance with their colourful dokhna, jwmgra (fasra) and aronai. The Bagurumba dance is accepted as main traditional dance of Bodo people. It is also accompanied by musical instruments like kham (a long drum, made of wood and goat skin or other animal's skin), flute, jota (made of iron/tama), serja (a bowed instrument, made of wood and animals skin), and gongwna (made of bamboo), tharkha a piece of split bamboo).
The Bihu dance is a folk dance from the Indian state of Assam related to the festival of Bihu. It is performed by both young men and women, and is characterised by brisk dance steps, and rapid hand movement.
Dancers wear traditionally colourful Assamese clothing. Dhol, Pepa, Baahi, Gagana are the musical instrument used in this dance. The dress of the dance is very colourful and bright.
Ladies wear sari of mustard and red and the men wear a dhoti a head band of colour red and mustard.
Jhumur is a traditional dance from eastern part of India, basically in Assam. The dance is performed by young girls. They are also accompanied by few male members, who by and large maintain the rhythm with musical instruments and vocals.
Raut Nacha is a traditional folk dance usually done by Yadavs (a caste which considers itself as descendants of Krishna) as symbol of worship to Krishna. Done at the time of 'Dev Udhni Ekadashi' (time of awakening of Gods after brief rest) according to Hindu panchang (calendar). The dance is a close resemblance of Krishna's Raas leela (dance of lord with his village's girls called gopis) with gopis.
Fugdi is a Goan folk dance performed by the women in the Konkan region during Hindu religious festivals like Ganesh Chaturthi and Vrata or towards the end of other dances like Dhalo. Fugdi is an art form that can be traced to the primeval cultural traditions of Goa. It is performed during various religious and social occasions
Dandiya Raas is an energetic, vibrant dance originating in the state of Gujarat. Often called the "stick dance" because it uses polished sticks or dandiya, it represents a mock-fight between Durga and Mahishasura, the mighty demon-king. It is nicknamed "The Sword Dance" because the dandiya represent the sword of Durga and are hit together.
Garba is customarily performed by women, the dance involves circular patterns of movement and rhythmic clapping. It popularly performed during Navratri. The word comes from "garbha deep" which is translated as either light in the inner sanctum of the temple or lamp inside a perforated earthen pot (which is often used in the dance). The Tippani dance originated from the Chorwad region of Saurashtra. Labourer women take a wooden rod, sometimes tipped with iron at one end, to beat the floor.
Nati refers to the traditional dance of Kullu district of Himachal Pradesh. It is quite popular in whole Himachal Pradesh.
Seven types of Nati dances are popular in Himachal Pradesh including Mahasuvi Nati, Sirmauri Nati and Lahauli Nati, Kinnauri Nati. The Kinnauri Nati dance is mime-like and includes languid sequences. Important among the dances of Nati is 'Losar shona chuksom'. The name from Losai, or the New Year. Activities such as sowing the crop and reaping it are included in it.
Chang dance is a folk dance from Rajasthan, India. It is also referred to Dhamal, dhuff dance, and as Holi dance as it is performed during the Hindu festival of the same name (Holi) to celebrate the defeat of evil. It is a group dance performed by men, carousing and singing riotously to the rhythmic beat of the chang instrument. It originates from the Shekhawati region of Rajasthan. This dance period is starts from the Maha Shivaratri festival and ends on Dhulandi, which is the day after the Holi festival. Folk songs used in this folk dance are called Dhamaal. All men sings, dance and dance. Meanwhile, some represents also plays which is called Sang.[clarification needed]
Ghoomar is a traditional folk dance of Rajasthan, India. The dance is chiefly performed by veiled women who wear flowing dresses called ghaghara.
The dance typically involves performers pirouetting while moving in and out of a wide circle. The word ghoomna describes the twirling movement of the dancers and is the basis of the word ghoomar. According to the tradtional rituals, newly married bride is expected to dance ghoomar on being welcomed to her new marital home. Ghoomar is often performed on special occasions, such as at weddings, festivals and religious occasions. which sometimes lasts for hours.
Jhumar or Jhoomar (Saraikجھمر,Punjabi ਝੂਮਰ) is a lively form of music and dance that originated in the Multan and Balochistan, also thrived in Sandalbar areas of Punjab in Pakistan. It is slower and more rhythmic form. The word "Jhumar" comes from Jhum/Jhoom, which means Swaying. The songs evoke a quality which reminds of swaying. Though the content of these songs is varied - they are usually love with emotional songs too. The Jhumar is a dance of ecstasy.  Jhumar is performed at the wedding ceremonies usually. It is a living demonstration of the happiness. The dance is mostly performed by the Balochi and people of Southern Punjab Pakistan. The emphasis of Jhumar is recreating the gaits of animals and birds. The movement of animals, the ploughing of the field, sowing of seeds and harvesting are shown in the original progression. The dance is also performed in circle, to the tune of emotional songs.
Performed exclusively by men, it is a common feature to see three generations - father, son and grandson - dancing all together at wedings. The dance is without acrobatics. Each region of Southern Punjab has its own variation of Jhomar. The movement of the arms only is considered its main forte. Feet are musically placed in front and backwards and turnings are taken to the right, sometimes the dancers place their one hand below the ribs on the left and gesticulate with the right hand. This dance does not tire out its performers and it is normally danced on moonlight nights in the villages away from the habitation. The dancers of this dance let-off a sound, "Dee Dee" in tune with the beat of the dance which adds to its grace. This dance has also been integrated into Bhangra in the eastern parts of Punjab.
The Khoria dance is an alternative of the Jhumar dance and is completely performed by women. This dance is very well-liked and popular in certain parts of central Haryana. The dance is performed at weddings, and other important festivities. There is a group of dancers who execute this dance and the speed is the most significant feature of this dance and in fact this is one of the fastest of the folk dances.
Performance of Khoria Dance
In the actual performance of the Khoria Dance in Haryana, the women & girls enter in the dancing place and stand in a circle, while singing a folk song. For this dance, the performers wear full gold-work skirts and colored chunries and heavy rustic jewellery. The simple movements acquire form and colour with the swirling and these steps later increase the tempo. Until, two or three pairs of the girls break from the ring into the centre with their arms joined and crossed together, swirling on the axis of their feet, while the girls in the ring, clap to the beat of the drum. In final stage, the dance is performed mainly around the circumference.
Female artists performing Veeragase is a vigorous dance based on Hindu mythology and involves very intense energy-sapping dance movements. Veeragase is one of the dances demonstrated in the Dasara procession held in Mysore. This dance is performed during festivals and mainly in the Hindu months of Shravana and Karthika
Dumhal is a dance performed by the men folk of the Wattal tribe of Kashmir on specific occasions. The performers wear long colourful robes, tall conical caps that are studded with beads and shells. The party moves in a procession carrying a banner in a very ceremonial fashion. It is dug into the ground and the men begin to dance, forming a circle. The musical accompaniment comprises a drum and the vocal singing of the participants. Dumhal is performed on set occasions and at set locations.
The dance has three distinct phases:(1) Sela - The feet movements are slow and comparatively rigid.
Shad Nongkrem at Meghalaya is a thanks-giving festival that celebrates the Almighty Lord. Shad Nongkrem dance festival is generally organized after a good harvest, for maintaining peace and prosperity in their territory. Shad Nongkrem of Meghalaya is among the cultural revivals of Meghalaya.
Performance - this dance allows the participation of unmarried girls draped in fine clothes. The girls wear gold and silver ornaments, while they dance to the tune of drums and cymbals. The dance movement of Shad Nongkrem involves forward and backward movements within a circle. Male performers dance around the circle formed by the girls, with sword and white yak-hair whisked in their hands.
The state of Meghalaya serves to be a destination that is aptly loaded with a huge variety of festivals including Derogata Dance Festival that attracts fun-seeking holiday-makes from all over the globe.
Performance - In the Derogata Dance Festival in Meghalaya, it is the women who get the priority over their counter-parts as they are bestowed with the coveted opportunity to strike down the multicolor turbans worn by the males. From the looks of it seems to be quite an easy task, but there is a catch. The women are forbidden from using any appendage or part of their body in this endeavor except their heads.
Laho dance is a part of the festivities of Behdienkhlam. Behdienkhlam is a celebration for the prosperity and well being of the people of Meghalaya.
Performance - Laho dance of Meghalaya allows the participation of both men and women, who dance in their colorful garments. Laho at Meghalaya is performed during the Behdienkhlam festival for sheer entertainment.
Chhau dance originated and performed in the Mayurbhanj District, Purulia District and Saraikela district and Nilagiri region of Odisha, West Bengal and Jharkhand respectively. It has its base in the martial arts tradition. The dance is a stylised mock battle in which two groups of dancers armed with swords and shields, alternatively attack and defend themselves with vigorous movements and elegant stances. Especially notable is the accompanying music, noted for its rhythmic complexities and vigorous percussion. The instruments include 'Mahuri' - a double reeded instrument, 'Dhola' - a barrel shaped two-sided drum, 'Dhumsa' - a hemispherical drum and 'Chadchadi' - a short cylindrical drum.
The Gotipuas are boy dancers who dress up as girls. They are students of the akhadas, or gymnasia, established by Ramachandradeva in Puri, in the periphery of the temple. As they were offshoots of the akhada system, goti puas also came to be known as akhada pilas - boys attached to akhadas. Another reason often given to justify the emergence of the goti pua system is that some followers of the Vaishnava religion disapproved of dancing by women as a pretext for worship - they introduced the practice of dancing by boys dressed as girls.
The word goti means 'one', 'single' and pua, 'boy', but the goti puas always dance in pairs. Boys are recruited about the age of six and continue to perform till they are 14, then become teachers of the dance or join drama parties. Goti puas are now part of professional teams, known as dals, each headed by a guru.
The boys are trained for about two years, during which, after having imbibed the basic technique, they learn items of dance, ornamental and expressional. The goti puas, being youngsters in their formative years, can adapt their bodies to the dance in a far more flexible manner as opposed to the maharis. A goti pua presentation is ably supported by a set of three musicians, who play the pakhawaj, the geeni, or cymbals and the harmonium. The boys do the singing themselves, though at times the group has an additional singer.
The Sambalpuri folk dance is performed in Binka and Sonepur of Subarnapur district during the month of chaitra. The male dancer paints his bare body with yellow and black stripes like that of a tiger and attaches a suitable tail. One or more dancers move from house to house and after a crowd gathers the dance begins. The dancers are accompanied by a drummer and a bell player who provides the music. The dance is nothing but acrobatic movement in rhythm. They make hissing sounds while dancing. The tiger dance is also performed in Berhampur during the Thakurani Jatra.
Though Dusserah is the occasion of the Sambalpuri folk dance Dalkhai, it is often performed at other festivals such as Bhaijiuntia, Phagun Puni, and Nuakhai. It is mostly danced by young women of Binjhal, Kuda, Mirdha, Sama and some other tribes of Sambalpur, Balangir, Sundargarh, Bargarh, Nuapada and Kalahandi districts. During this dance men join them as drummers and musicians. The dance is accompanied by a rich orchestra of folk music played by a number of instruments known as Dhol, Nisan, Tamki, Tasa and Mahuri. The dhol player controls the tempo while dancing in front of the girls.
Dhap is a Sambalpuri folk dance mostly performed by the Kandha tribe of Kosal region. Men of one village dance with women of another village. Usually unmarried boys and girls take part. The dance is performed during marriage ceremony and more often for the sake of recreation. The dance is so named because of the accompanying instrument, the dhap. The dhap is in the shape of a Khanjari made up of wood with one side open and the other side covered with a piece of animal skin. The dhap dancer holds the dhap with his left hand, the sling slung over his left shoulder, and beats with both hands.
The Sambalpuri folk dance called Ghumra is also known as vira-badya of the Odisha region. It was used during war to encourage soldiers. It is also used to give social message like forestation, saving girls, literacy, etc. It uses a typical drum: just like a big pitcher with a long stem made of clay. The mouth is covered with the skin of a godhi (a reptile). When played with both hands, it produces a peculiar sound quite different from other drums.
The dance performed to the accompaniment of this drum is called Ghumra Naat. It begins 15 days before the Gamha Puni (full moon in September) and culminates on that night in a ceremonial performance. Young men of the communities fix a Ghoomra each on the chest with string on body and simultaneously dance and play.
The performance begins with slow circular movements. The nisan is a smaller variety of kettle-drum played with two leather sticks. The player always places himself in the centre and controls the tempo of the dance. He also indicates change over the movements. After a brief dance sequence in rhythmic patterns, all the dancers move in a concentric circle and then stand erect in a line. Then enters the singer who first sings in praise of Saraswati and other gods and goddesses. During the song, the drums remain silent. After the prayer-song Chhanda, Chaupadi and other literary folk-songs are sung. Each couplet of a song is followed by a dance. At the end of the each couplet the singer adds 'Takita Dhe' which is a numonic syllable for the time-beats and indicates the dance to begin. Ghumra dancers are basically from Kalahandi and Balangir district.
Karam or Karma literally means 'fate' in Kosli (Sambalpuri language). This pastoral Sambalpuri folk dance called Karma Naach is performed during the worship of the god or goddess of fate (Karam Devta or Karamsani Devi), whom the people consider the cause of good and bad fortune. It begins from Bhadra Shukla Ekadasi (eleventh day of the full moon of the month of Bhadra) and lasts for several days.
Only men can take part in the Keisabadi, a form of the Sambalpuri folk dance. Some of them hold a stick two feet long. They dance in different forms by striking the sticks according to the rhythms of the song they sing. The leader sings first and others follow him. They sing in Kosli and in every stanza they shout "Haido". The main theme of the song is derived from the love story of Radha and Krishna.
The dance known as Bhangra is one of Punjab's most popular dances and the name of the music style. Bhangra is done with classic style Punjabi dresses, and with instruments including a Dhool, Chimta, Algoza etc. It was originally danced during the harvest season, but now is a popular form of celebration at any time such as weddings and festivals. Bhangra is a very popular style of music and dance in Punjab, but is also very popular in the diaspora, specifically in Canada and the U.K. where many Bhangra competitions are now held. Creating Bhangra teams has become very popular and influential with teenagers.It is a mixture of many steps like dhamaal, jutti, Fulka, Sialkoti, Dankare, Jugni, Mirzi, Fumnian. Other folk dance of Punjab like Jhummar, Sammi, are included in Bhangra.
The counterpart to male bhangra, giddha is a female folk dance from Punjab. It is an energetic dance derived from ancient ring dancing that highlights feminine grace and elasticity. It is often accompanied by singing folk couplets known as bolliyan
Malwai Giddha is a form of Giddha in which only male members participates.
Kikkli is normally performed by two girls holding hands and twirling each other in circle and balancing their positions in circular motions. The two people pair up and hold each other's hands (right with right and left with left) and spin around at high speed without leaving hands. Sometimes one of the partners bends knees (goes down and comes up) or even lifts both feet off the floor (spinning in the air changing to various foot patterns) while spinning and performs different antics if the other partner is strong enough to hold on.
Ghoomar is a traditional women's folk dance of Rajasthan. It is performed by groups of women in swirling robes accompanied by men and women singing together. This folk dance gets its name from 'ghoomna', the pirouetting which displays the spectacular colours of the flowing 'ghaghara', the long skirt of the Rajasthani women. There is an amazing grace as the skirt flair slowly while the women twirl in circles, their faces covered with the help of the veil. They dance in measured steps and graceful inclinations of body, beating palms or snapping fingers at particular cadences, while singing some lilting songs.
Kalbelia is performed by Naachato Rajasthan the women's group of the Kalbelia community of Rajasthan. The main occupation of the community is catching snakes and trading snake venom. Hence, the dance movements and the costumes bear resemblance to that of the serpents. Dancers attired in traditional black swirling skirts sway sinuously to the plaintive notes of the 'been' - the wooden instrument of the snake charmers.
Malwai Giddha is a form of Giddha in which only male members participates.
Ghodi and Kachchhi Ghodi is an Indian folk dance that originates from the Shekhawati region of Rajasthan. Dancers wear novelty horse costumes and participate in mock fights while a singer narrates folk tales about local bandits. It is commonly performed during wedding ceremonies to welcome and entertain the bridegroom's party, and during other social settings.
Tera Tali is another famous folk dance of Rajasthan. Performed by the 'Kamar' tribe. The women folk sit on the ground while performing the Tera Tali. Men? Well they just sing. An interesting part of the Tera Tali dance is tying of metal cymbals (Manjiras) to different parts of the body, mostly on the legs. On many occasions the women clasp a sword in between their teeth and balance a decorative pot on their head.
Singhi Chham is a masked dance of Sikkim, depicting snow lion - the cultural symbol of the state. (Snow lion was decreed the guardian deity of the people of Sikkim by Guru Padamsambhava). The third highest mountain in the world - Kanchenjunga(Khang-Chen Dzong Pa), standing sentinel over the state of Sikkim, is believed to resemble the legendary snow lion. The natives display their cultural symbol by dressing up in furry costumes and performing this majestic masked dance.
Traditional Parai Attam Performer
Parai Attam, or Thappattam, is a dance in which folks beat Parai and dance to its rhythm. It is one of the oldest traditional dances, originally performed for multiple reasons, ranging from warning people about the upcoming war, requesting the civilians to leave the battlefield, announcing victory or defeat, stopping a breach of water body, gathering farmers for farming activities, warning the wild animals about people's presence, during festivals, wedding, celebrations, worship of nature and so on.
The womenfolk of Tamil Nadu have three closely related dances, which can be performed at any time but are seen at their best during festivities. The simplest of these is the Kummi, in which the dancers gather in a circle and clap their hands as they dance.
Kolattam is an ancient village art. This is mentioned in Kanchipuram as 'Cheivaikiyar Kolattam', which proves its antiquity. This is performed by women only, with two sticks held in each hand, beaten to make a rhythmic sound. Pinnal Kolattam is danced with ropes which the women hold in their hands, the other of which are tied to a tall pole. With planned steps, the women skip over each other, which forms intricate lace-like patterns in the ropes. As coloured ropes are used, this lace looks extremely attractive. Again, they unravel this lace reversing the dance steps. This is performed for ten days, starting with the Amavasi or Newmoon night after Deepavali.
Karagattam or Karagam is a folk dance of Tamil country performed by villagers perform in praise of the rain goddess Mari Amman. The performers balance a water pot on their head very beautifully. Traditionally, this dance is performed in two types - Aatta Karagam is danced with decorated pots on the head and symbolises joy and happiness, while the Sakthi Karagam is performed only in temples and is mainly danced for entertainment. Earlier it was performed only with the accompaniment of the Naiyandi Melam, but now it also includes songs. Most expert artistes are from the regions of Thanjavur, Pudukottai, Ramanathapuram, Madurai, Tirunelveli, and Pattukottai and Salem.
This is done by girls dressed as peacocks, resplendent with peacock feathers and a glittering head-dress complete with a beak. This beak can be opened and closed with the help of a thread tied to it, and manipulated from within dress. Other similar dances are, Kaalai Attam (dressed as a bull), Karadi Attam (dressed as a bear) and Aali Aattam (dressed as a demon) which are performed in the villages during village get-togethers. Vedala Aattam is performed wearing a mask depicting demons.
The Paampu attam or snake-dance arises from the popularity of the snake as a protective divinity, safeguarding the health and happiness of the rural folk. Usually danced by young girls dressed in a tight-fighting costume designed like the snake-skin. The dancer simulates the movements of the snake, writhing and creeping, at times making quick biting movements with head and hands. The raised hands held together look like the hood of a snake.
Meaning Dance of Grace, was traditionally a dance where a few men would stand in a row and perform rhythmic steps to the musical accompaniment, with the number of dancers increasing; over the past ten years women have also started performing this dance. Typically, the musical accompaniment is the Thavil and the performers have coloured handkerchiefs tied to their fingers and wear ankle bells.
Puli Attam is a Folk Dance of early Tamil country. This Dance forms "a play of the Tigers". Normally the performers make movements of the majestic tigers.Their bodies are painted by local artists in vibrant yellow and black to resemble replica of a tiger. The music instruments used are Tharai, Thappu or Thappattai. Performed during temple festivals on the village streets.
Poikal attam refers to the dance of "false legs". Here dancers are attached to a dummy horse at the waist. Instead of 4 legs of a horse only 2 legs of the person with the prop on his body is present. The image is similar to a rider on a horse (albeit a two legged horse and thus the name Poikal attam). This is a popular folklore dance with themes often on "Raja Desingu" - a once popular Rajput ruler called Tej Singh who invaded areas all the way up until Tamil Nadu.
Puppet shows are held in every village during festivals and fairs. Many different kinds of puppets are used for this show - cloth, wood, leather, etc. They are manipulated through strings or wires. The persons stand behind a screen and the puppets are held in front. The stories enacted in the puppet shows are from puranas, epics and folklore. These shows are very entertaining and hold both adults and children enthralled for many hours.
Normally conducted during village festivals, during the months of Panguni and Aadi. This is performed where three or four streets meet. Here, make-up and costumes are considered of prime importance. Only men take part; the female roles also played by them. The performance consists of story-telling, dialogue-rendering, songs and dance, all performed by the artistes. The stories are taken from Puranas, epics such as Ramayana and Mahabharata, and also local folklore. The play starts in the late evening and gets over only during the small hours of the nights. Theru Koothu is popular in the northern districts of Tamil Nadu. The Koothu can be categorised as Nattu Koothu, including Vali Koothu, Kuravai Koothu etc. Samaya Koothu dealing with religious topics, Pei Koothu including Thunangai Koothu and Porkala Koothu dealing with martial events.
Hojagiri is a reflection of the age-old culture and the unique style of dance of the Reang community of Tripura. Only lower half of the body is moved to create rhythmic movements. Dancers performing unusually amazing acrobatic feats is the main highlight of the dance. Reang girls twist and turn and dance in time to the compelling rhythm, sometimes dancing on an earthen pitcher or balancing a bottle on the head with a lighted lamp on top of it.
This is a folk dance from Brij region of Uttar Pradesh. This is done by girls dressed as peacocks, resplendent with peacock feathers and a glittering head-dress complete with a beak. This beak can be opened and closed with the help of a thread tied to it, and manipulated from within dress. This dance is associated with Lord Krishna and Radha. It is considered that when Radharani wanted to see Mayur Nritya, Lord Krishna used to portray himself as a peacock and performs dance like Mayur to please he
This is a folk dance from Brij region of Uttar Pradesh. This is done by veiled women. They balance large multi-tiered circular wooden pyramids on their heads, alight with 108 oil lamps, dance to the strains of 'rasia' - songs of Lord Krishna. This dance is performed during various festivities in India
The Rasleela is most popular form of folk dance of India, especially during the festivals of Krishna Janmashtami and Holi in the regions of Mathura and Vrindavan in Uttar Pradesh. Rasa Lila is a popular form of folk theatre in the regions of Mathura, Vrindavana in Uttar Pradesh, especially during the festivals of Krishna Janmashtami and Holi, and amongst various followers of Gaudiya Vaishnavism in the region.
The folk dance/theatre of Gambhira originated among the Hindu community of Maldah in West Bengal. After Partition of India, Chapai Nawabganj in Rajshahi became the main center of Gambhira. With time, Gambhira has undergone many changes in terms of theme and style of its presentation. Muslims also became the custodian of the dance, and thereby it became an integral part of their culture. May be for that reason the dancer now wears the Lungi. Gambhira comprises a few characters with dialogues in an atmosphere of music, its themes now being contemporary social problems, fakeness and selfishness of people and so on.
Alkap is a rural performance, popular in many places of Bengal, especially in Rajshahi, Maldah and Murshidabad districts, and the Rajmahal Hills in the state of Jharkhand. This is associated with the Gajan Festival of Shiva around the middle of April. The beginning of this form was in the late nineteenth century. It has no written script, but scenarios based on popular love stories, which the actors elaborate with extreme dialogues, breaking up for songs, dances and comic or satirical sketches called Kap. It is a composite performance comprising acting, dancing, singing and recitation. Each Alkap group consists of ten to twelve dancers, under the leadership of a 'Sorkar' or 'Guru'. The group includes two or three 'Chhokras', one or two lead singers called 'Gayen' or 'Gayok'. Also, there remain 'Dohars', the chorus called 'Gayokdol' and instrumentalists called 'Bajnadars'. Alkap performances take place at night on an open stage.
Domni is performed in Malda district. A Domni performance starts with a Vandana dedicated to God. Then the 'Mool Gayen' (Lead Character/Protagonist) and 'Chhokras' (Supporting Characters) offer devotional prayers. The dance performances of the Chhokras are called 'Nachari' or 'Lachari'. The main characters are the roles of husbands, wives, mothers, greedy moneylenders, peasant- girls and so on. The plays are composed taking extracts from small events of everyday life and are presented in a satirical manner. The musical instruments are Harmonium, Dholak, Kartal, flute and so on. With change on social life and popular taste/culture, this folk form is becoming extinct.
Dhunachi is a dance performed in Bengal for the Durga Pooja at the time of Dussehra. Women and Men wear traditional Bengali dresses and dance with a mud pot filled with burnt coconut shavings. This is known as a tribute to Maa Durga