India is a land which is famous for its fine arts. Dance is one of such finest arts that is popular all around the world and has become a part of almost everyone’s life. There are many forms of dance that are practiced in India. Different states have their own different forms of dance. Odisha is one such state which has given some really beautiful forms of dance that is appreciated all around the globe. A number of folk dances that emerged from Odisha are gaining popularity everywhere in the recent time. One such dance is Sambalpuri folk dance. It has its origin in the western part of Odisha and has developed subsequently in the past few years. Folk dances are dances that are developed by the people belonging to a particular community or a region.
These dances are performed on special events and each folk dance has its own cultural identity and way of performance. Sambalpuri dance’s history traces back to the sixteenth century. A book name “Geographika”, claims the presence of this dance during the 16th century. It was started by the king Balram Dev, who ruled in Sambalpur during the mid 16th century. This dance form is very popular with a number of communities, living in the western Odisha. It is performed by as many as fourteen different communities and this diversity has brought some changes and modifications in Sambalpuri dance over the years.
When It Is Performed ?
It is performed at the times of religious ceremonies and on special occasions like marriages or birth of a child. Festivals such as Sivaratri, Mahul, Nuakhai, Gundi, Sitalsati, etc. are incomplete without the performance of this dance. There are different forms of Sambalpuri dances. Some of the major famous Sambalpuri dances are – Rasarkeli, Chutku Chuta, Dula biha, Dalkhai, Malashree, karma and Ghudka.
Dress and Costume
The best thing about Sambalpuri dance is the colourful and vivid costumes that are worn by the performers during the performance. The women usually wear traditional sarees with red blouse and ornaments like armlets, bracelets,bangles, thread khagla, necklace,earrings,nose rings, anklets and put colourful flowers in their hair. They also decorate their feet with ‘Alta’ before performing the dance. Male performers wear Khadi clothes and Hawaii T-shirt on the top and tie a red towel around their waste area and a turban on their head with a peacock feather attached to it.
Witnessing Sambalpuri dance live, on the rhythmic beats of drums,tasha,naal,nagada- can be a lifetime memory. The glorious steps along with smooth body movement and amazing gestures and the years of hard work of performers- combine to make Sambalpuri dance -The Pride of Odisha. It was performed at ‘Burj Khalifa’ which helped it to reach International locations and it has become popular in the Gulf region too. It has also entered Bollywood industry. The presence of Sambalpuri dance dance can be traced in a film called ” Kaun Kitne Paani Mein”. So if you ever visit Odisha, or get a chance to feel this dance live, just don’t think. Go for it.