Ghoomar

 
ghoomer

The popular ghoomar is the representative dance of the Bhils, although it is especially associated with the royal ladies of Jaipur, who perform it on certain auspicious occasions. The reason for that might be that the Bhils and the Jaipur royalty have been close for centuries.

The Bhils were accorded the honour that unless their chieftain put a tilak (a vermillion mark put on the forehead on an auspicious occasion) on his forehead, the coronation of no future Kachhwaha king would be considered legal. Since then, by all accounts, the Bhils have remained loyal to the side of the Kachhwahas.

The ghoomar is one of the legacies that they passed on to the Rajput royalty. Derived from the word ghoomna (pirouette), this is a very simple dance where the ladies, dressed in resplendent voluminous ghagras, move smoothly and gracefully in circles. The accompanying songs are sung alternately by both men and women, as the dancers move both clockwise and anti-clockwise. The effect of the free play of the folds of the ample and colourful ghagra is dazzling. If you are in Jaipur during festival time, don't miss a ghoomar recital at the City Palace.

The Thar Desert of Rajasthan comes alive when its dancers take the center stage. Rajasthan has great variety of dances, which are simple expressions of celebration and festivity. The dancers, the dances and costumes have made Thar the most colorful desert in the world. Each region adding its own form of dance styles and performers. There are dances that follows a lineage of age old traditions, adhere to religious significance, display their daring attitude as well as complimenting various fairs and festivals.

Ghoomar, a community dance for women performed on auspicious occasions. Gair Ghoomar, Raika, Jhoria and Gauri are particularly of Bhil tribe. Gair is performed on Holi but only by the men folk. Chari dance, with pots on the head and a lighted lamp, is popularly performed on marriage occasions or on the birth of a male child. Kalbelia dance is of the kalbelia tribe, the snake charmers. With numerous pots on the head, women excel the balancing act in the Matka-bhawai. Terah taali, is a ritual for Baba Ramdev, a dance with thirteen manjiras. Other dances are Kachhi-Ghodi, Kathputli (the puppet dance), Fire dance, drum dance and various others pertaining to the particular tribes. Kathhak, a popular dance form being imported from Uttar Pradesh have been revived by the rajputana courts, with a style and theme of its own.

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