It is the custom of UNESCO to reserve a day for everything within the scope of performing arts. That is why every year, 29th April is celebrated as the International Dance Day.
This date was specially chosen as it is the Birthday of a Popular French dancer and balletmaster named Jean-Georges Noverre. However, the day is dedicated to celebrating dance in general, with no focus on a particular type of dance form.
Although, our generation is lucky enough to witness various dance forms- old, new and a combination of both, here we have listed 3 Indian dance forms which are slowly fading away into oblivion:
Domni is a folk dance based on drama which originated in Maldah, West Bengal. It aims to depict everyday life with a hint of satire. The performance starts on a devotional note and is accompanied by music from instruments such as Harmonium, dholak and flute.
Originating in the Barak valley of Assam, Ojha is a religious form of dance. What sets it apart from the other dance forms is the fact that it is performed solo by a male dancer, however, women are also seen performing it sometimes. The dancer is often seen wearing a long skirt and kurta, while holding a broom in his hand. Ojha is usually performed during Shravan, at the puja of Goddess Bishari.
Tamasha is a folk dance which originated in the state of Maharashtra and is related with the Kolhati and Mahar communities. It involves dancing, singing, and acting in a suggestive manner. This dance form seeks participation of both men and women- while men play the harmonium, dholak and tabla, women perform the lavani dance.
Tamasha was one of the most famous dance forms once upon a time, but now it can only be seen in certain villages of Maharashtra.
In Today’s era, many dancers who specialise in certain dance forms are going unrecognised. Despite trying to keep the culture alive, they are facing shortage of funds and are sparsely remunerated for their diligent work. It is our responsibility to save the dance forms, heading towards oblivion, by funding the dancers and supporting them through recognition as well as remuneration.