(Last Updated on : 21/10/2013)
Dances of Tawang district
are a reflection of the ancient cultures and regional traditions which have been practiced since ancient ages, by the local inhabitants of this Indian district. Yak
dance, Aji Lhamu dance and lion and peacock
dance are some of the popular traditional dances which are performed in this part of the country.
Aji Lhamu Dance
Aji Lhamu dance is practiced by Sherdukpen
s of West Kameng District
s of Tawang
during the Losar festival
. This dance is a portrayal of the Tibetan version of the Hindu
epic of Ramayana
and is practiced by five characters. Lhum and Lhamu are the female characters, while Nyapa is the main protagonist. Gyeli is yet another character in the dance. As per a mythological account, Lhamu is a fairy who had arrived on the earth and became the queen of Gyeli later. The dance therefore depicts the wedding ceremony of King Chhoegay Norzang and Lhamu.
This dance is generally performed by the Monpas of the Eastern Indian state
of Arunachal Pradesh
. The yak dance is done by masked dancers whose dance symbolizes the discovery of the yak with the aide of a magical bird
. This dance portrays the joy of the people upon finding the yak and it signifies the presence of health, wealth and happiness of the Monpa tribes, who believe that performing this dance would relieve them of all their complications and anxieties.
Lion and Peacock Dance
There exists an interesting legendary tale which is associated with the lion and peacock dance. According to this story, a saint
named Tentelling was once meditating on the summit of Gangrikapro mountain
for three years constantly, with severe concentration and abstaining from drinks and food. Two lions resided on the other side of the very same mountain. The legend also states that the snow lions were astonished to notice the saint mediating so austerely and out of compassion for him, offered him some milk
. Gradually, the lions and the saint became close friends. News of this extraordinary incident reached the ears of the inhabitants of the place who approached the spot to witness the incident. Watching the sight with their own eyes, they were dumbfounded at the intimacy of man and animal and therefore they started dancing together. Therefore, the lion and peacock dance signifies the importance of harmony and mutual respect and also emphasizes upon the fact that for the survival of all species on this planet, the existence of peace and harmony between all living beings is essential.