Folk Dances of India

2 years ago

Folk Dances of India

Folk Dances are an integral part of the culture and tradition of India. The native communities of a place have been performing their folk dances since ages for various purposes like to celebrate harvest season, celebrate weddings and for entertainment. The attire and accessories used in the dance form are quite dazzling and magnificent. The people have preserved their culture of dances well by performing and propagating it. Nowadays, we also see that these folk dances are performed in cultural programmes at schools and colleges by not only the particular community, but also by other people who may admire the dance form. So here, let us have a look at some of the folk dances of India, along with their details and interesting facts.


This beautiful folk dance form belongs to Jammu and Kashmir. The Watal tribe traditionally performs it. Men wearing colourful long clothes and conical caps with beads studded on them perform Dumhal. This dance is performed in groups with the dancers matching the beats of the drums and singing songs in chorus. A flag or a banner with a message on it is dugged into the ground and the dance is performed around it.

Folk Dances of India | Image Source: Google

2. Bhangra 

This folk dance belongs to Punjab. It is so popular all over the country that it seldom requires introduction. It is one of the most energetic and popular dances of India performed on strong beats of drums, dhols and nagadas. Punjabis celebrate their harvest festival ‘Lohri’ by performing Bhangra in groups in a circle. People also perform this in functions like weddings and other celebrations.

Folk Dances of India | Image Source: Google

3. Ghoomar 

This folk dance belongs to Rajasthan. The literal meaning of Ghoomar is ‘Ghoomna’ in Hindi which means to twirl or rotate. Initially, the Bhil community used to perform it. Then other Rajasthani communities also started performing it in due course of time to worship goddess Saraswati. Ghoomar is usually performed by women wearing dresses called Ghaghara. It is performed at special occasions like weddings and religious or festive occasions. Lots of songs and movies in Popular Culture have a reference to Ghoomar.

4. Theyyam   

This folk dance belongs to the Malabar region of Kerala. It is actually a form of worship of Goddess Kali. The dancers wear headgears and paint their faces with lots of colours to add vibrancy to their costumes. This is an age long custom which prevails in the culture of Kerala as a symbol of worshipping the Goddess.

Folk Dances of India | Image Source: Google

5. Garba 

This folk dance form belongs to Gujarat.  It is traditionally performed during the 9 day festival called ‘Navratri’ in the Hindu Culture honoring Goddess Durga. It is performed in circles around either a centrally lit lamp or a picture of Goddess Shakti. People wear a variety of vibrant and colourful costumes while performing it like Odhani, Chaniya Choli etc. This dance form is also very famous in foreign countries. The Garba dance is extremely magnificent and a delight to eyes.

Folk Dances of India | Image Source: Google

6. Bihu 

This folk dance belongs to Assam and is related to the Bihu festival celebrated by the Assamese community. This dance form has brisk hand and body movements. Musical instruments like Dhol, horn shaped pipes are played during the performance of Bihu. The costumes and accessories used in this dance form have a red colour base. This is a very elegant dance form.

Folk Dances of India | Image Source: Google

7. Cheraw Dance

This folk dance form belongs to Mizoram. It showcases an enthralling combination of rhythm and skills. Pairs of long bamboo sticks are held horizontal and close to the ground by 4-8 people. The people holding the sticks rhythmically clap them and the dancers dance between the sticks on the beats of the song and claps made. The dancers wear beautiful dresses with feathers and hats on heads. 

Folk Dances of India | Image Source: Google

8. Lavani

This folk dance type belongs to Maharashtra. It is actually a combination of folk dance and music. It is performed rhythmically to the beats of a percussion instrument called Dholki. The women who perform Lavani wear beautiful vibrant coloured sarees which are around 9 yards long. Lavani is considered to be a very fast dance with powerful rhythm.

9. Lava

This folk dance form traditionally belongs to Lakshadweep. It is usually performed by males on celebrations such as festive occasions. The dancers match to the beat of the drums and make a circle to perform this dance. They were beautiful costumes like red trousers, white scarfs and white headgears.

Folk Dances of India | Image Source: Google

10. Dalkhai

This folk dance belongs to Odisha. Sambalpuri saree and scarfs are used by women as costumes in them. Its theme is based on the theme of Radha and Krishna from the epics. It is mainly performed at festivals on the beats of Dhol.

Folk Dances of India | Image Source: Google

Suyash Ranjan

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.