Dandia Ras, Gujarat - Informative & researched article on Dandia Ras, Gujarat
 Indianetzone: Largest Free Encyclopedia of India with thousand of articlesIndian Dances

 Art & Culture|Entertainment|Health|Reference|Sports|Society|Travel
Forum  | Free E-magazine  | RSS Feeds  
Indian Crafts|Indian Monuments|Indian Dances|Indian Festivals|Indian Paintings|Indian Photography|Indian Sculpture
Home > Art & Culture > Indian Dances > Indian Folk Dances > Folk Dances of Gujrat > Dandia Ras
Dandia Ras, Gujarat
Dandia-Ras dance is one of India’s most popular folk dances and is full of energy and excitement.
 Dandia Ras, GujaratDandia Ras which is also known as the 'stick dance' is one of the most popular folk dances of Gujarat state of India. This dance is performed elaborately during the festival of Navratri, making the evenings special for the people of Gujarat. The word Ras in 'Dandia-Ras' signifies Ras dance, which is considered a form of Raslila. The Ras is simple and is generally performed by a group of young people who move in typical style in measured steps around a circle, accompanied by a singing chorus and a host of musical instruments like the dhol, cymbals, zanz and shehnai (flute).

History of Dandia Ras
It is considered that this folk dance is from the Limbdi region of Gujarat (a state in Western India). Dandia Ras originated as devotional Garba dances, which were practiced in the honour of Goddess Durga. This dance is basically the staging of a mock-fight between Goddess Durga and Mahishasura. The stick which is an essential part of the dance represents the sword of Goddess Durga.

Performance of Dandia Ras
Dandia Ras is always performed in a group. In the ancient times, men essentially performed this folk dance, but now the Dandia Ras a counterpart to the Garba, is equally enjoyed and danced by both men and women. In its modern form, men and women join and dance in circle, holding small polished colourful sticks or dandias. As they whirl to the rhythm of the dance, they strike the dandiyas together, adding to the joyful atmosphere. Though it is played in almost all parts of the state, the best Ras dancers are the Kathiawari Ras dancers, from the Saurashtra region. The sprightly circular movements to the scintillating beats of the dhol are mesmerizing and transports one to a totally different world of rhythm and joy. The performers add and subtract, as per the need of audiences while performing a Vesha.

The main difference between the 'Garba' and 'Dandiya' dance performances is that Garba is performed before 'Aarti' of Goddess while Dandia is performed after it. Exclusively women perform Garba, men and women join in for Dandiya.

Costume of Dandia Ras
Dandia Ras has an interesting costume to exhibit. The female dancers usually dress themselves in colourful traditional embroidered choli, ghagra and bandhani dupattas that feature dazzling mirror work. To complete the look they wear decorative heavy jewellery. The men wear special turbans and kedias.

Popularity of Dandia Ras
Over a period of time, the popularity of Dandiya Ras has spread in all parts of India. In the present days, this dance is not only an important part of Navaratri in Gujarat but extends itself to other festivals related to harvest and crops as well. In fact, this dance is also performed at social functions and on stage.

(Last Updated on : 25/09/2014)
E-mail this Article | Post a Comment
More Articles in Folk Dances of Gujrat  (5)
Recently Updated Articles in Indian Dances
Kalamandalam Satyabhama
Kalamandalam V. Satyabhama was an Indian classical dancer, teacher, choreographer known for her performances in Mohiniyattam.
Srekala Bharath
Srekala Bharath, a renowned Bharatnatyam Dancer, is the follower of the Vazhvoor style of dance.
Medha Yodh
Medha Yodh was a well-known Indian and Indian American Bharatanatyam dancer. She had performed in various parts of India and the world and created a documentary film on Garba in 1987.
Leela Samson
Leela Samson is a notable Bharatanatyam dancer, choreographer and writer from India. A recipient of Padma Shri, she has taught Bharatanatyam at Shriram Bhartiya Kala Kendra in Delhi for many years.
Forum on Indian Dances
Free E-magazine
Subscribe to Free E-Magazine on Art & Culture
Dandia Ras, Gujarat - Informative & researched article on Dandia Ras, Gujarat
Contact Us   |   RSS Feeds
Copyright © 2008 Jupiter Infomedia Ltd. All rights reserved including the right to reproduce the contents in whole or in part in any form or medium without the express written permission of
Jupiter Infomedia Ltd.