(Last Updated on : 12/09/2013)
Folk dances of Uttar Pradesh
show the rich cultural heritage of the state. The dance dramas based on the mythological stories of divine characters like Lord Rama
& Lord Krishna
reflects the traditional essence. The major folk dances of Uttar Pradesh include Raslila
and the Charkula Dance
The Raslila performed in this state is known as the Braj Raslila, since it has originated from the Braj area of Uttar Pradesh. It is a theatrical form, which is now performed in many Indian states. Here, also the story revolves around Lord Krishna's charming childhood, adolescence and the early youth of Krishna, where it explores the relationship of Lord Krishna with his consort Radha
Ramlila is considered as a traditional art form reputed in folk culture of Uttar Pradesh. It primarily deals with the life of Lord Rama in Ramayana,
who is also another incarnation of Lord Vishnu
. This dance form depicts the story of the exile of Lord Rama from Ayodhya
, his success over Ravana
and his interaction with Sita
Khyal is a folk arts form, which is simultaneously popular in many Indian states and it started as a prime dance form in Uttar Pradesh. There are different styles, each known by the name of the city, acting style, community or the author. Some popular Khyals are Jaipuri Khyal, the Abhinaya Khyal, Gadhaspa Khyal, and Ali baksh Khyal, where the subtleties demarcate these variations. Generally, these plays are mythological referring the various events in Puranas
and these are presented very creatively, though, they explore the historical aspects of these events. These performances are also marked by presence of elements like romance, brave deeds, and sentiment, beliefs etc.
The performances of Khyal start with an invocation, which begins with hymns to the respected deities and various instruments like the nakkara or the dholak drum
and the harmonium
give the music. It is said that the clown is as always an integral part of this show. The cast played by males is directed on stage, by the ustaad, who is mostly the producer and the director responsible for the play. He always remains on stage & helps to all artists, later on even prompting the script if time demands.
Nautanki is a form of street play or skit that is popular in the northern side of India especially in the states of Bihar
and Uttar Pradesh. Many times the Nautanki
artistes are from those families, who have been in this profession for generations. Most of them are illiterate, though a number of professional singers have also joined Nautanki mandlis.
Naqaal is a folk art form of all the villages of Punjab
and Uttar Pradesh in the north India. Here, it is very popular & preferred way of entertainment, since it is very enjoyable, and it subtly and sarcastically presents the unpleasant shadow spread on our life. There is a storyteller character in all the plays of Naqaals, where generally the themes are based on a common man.
The plot of this Swang performance is based on the stories of great personalities. In this state, the Swangs of Puran Nath Jogi, Gopi Nath
and Veer Hakikat Rai are very popular.
This is a popular dance form of Uttar Pradesh. It has a unique style. The play back singers use to give support to the dancers on the stage.
This is the most spectacular dance performance, which is widely performed in the Braj region of Uttar Pradesh, by the Brahman
Community of the villages in Mathura
district. It is a dramatic dance performance that is visually attractive. This dance form symbolises the birth of Radha