Dances of Nepal
Nepalese Chariya (Classical)
This is one of the very ancient classical dances of the kingdom of
Nepal. This dance is dedicated to the well known living Goddess "Kumari"
of Kathmandu. During the famous "Indrajatra" festival in Kathmandu,
the Goddess Kumari, decked with splendid ornaments is taken round
the old Kathmandu in traditional chariot and thousand of Nepalese
people pay homage to her, including the king of Nepal.
2. Manjushree Dance:
Manjushree is the oldest of the Bodhisattvas and his worship
confers on the devotee wisdom, retentive memory, intelligence and
eloquence. He is the patron of those who preach the Dharma. In
Nepal he has a special place, for according to the Buddhist
legends it is Manjushree who came from Maha Chin, worshipped the
self-existent flame at the edge of the lake, which covered the
valley, and then drained the Valley by cutting through the ridge
at its rim with his flaming sword thus making the Valley fit for
human habitation. the famous Swayambhu Maha chaitya marks the
place of the self-existent flame and to the west of the chaitya is
an important shrine of Manjushree.
3. Panache Buddha Dance:
The Panache Buddha "Five Buddha" is the five transcendental
Buddhas of tantric Buddhism. According to Bajrayana teaching,
original consciousness, usually symbolized by Bajrasattva of
Vajradhara, is radiated into these Five Buddha's: Vairochana "The
Brilliant One", Aksobhaya "The Unshakable", Ratnasambhava "The
Matrix of the Jewel", Amitabha"The Infinite Light", and
Amoghasiddhi "The Infallible Realization". Each has his particular
posture, color and direction and form of them are situated at the
cardinal points of the stupa with the fifth. Vairochana considered
as separate deities, but as the five constituents of personality (skanda)
which reside in each man.
4. Bajrayogini Dance:
Named after the goddess, Bajrayogini, this is one of the ancient
classical dance of Nepal. According to the Buddhist tantric
tradition, there are four Yoginis or tantric goddesses in the
Kathmandu Valley. Bajrayogini is depicted as greatly pleased with
her devotees for their prayers and thereupon shovering blessings
on them. Of particular importance are the symbolic movements of
hands and huger dexterously timed with general body movements and
facial expressions. This dance demonstrates a beautiful blend of
wrathful feelings and peaceful motions, suggesting at the same
time a strong sense of protection and preservation. It is
preformed particularly in the Buddhist temples on special
occasions of going through the rituals
5. Arya Tara Dance:
This is a popular Charya dance of ancient times. As mentioned in
mythology, during the middle Ages Arya Tara "The Holy Mother",
manifested herself at the request of Sarbagya Mitra, to liberate
human belongs from mundane problems, so as to help attain "Mokchya"
- Spiritual Liberation. The song for this Charya dance describs
the various merits of Arya Tara. This dance was specially
preformed as a part of the rituals followed during the religious
festivals and ceremonies in full regalia
Nepalese Folk Dance
6. Jhyaure Dance:
Jhayure dance is popular among the community of the Gandaki zone
of the western part of Nepal. This dance is preformed by the young
boys girls in happy mood after a good meeting with theirs lovers.
7. Tappa Dance:
This dance is popular in the Rapti zone, especially Dang
districts. The dance starts in a slow key and the tempo gets
faster and faster towards the end. The hand drum is called Madal
which is also very popular in Nepal. Essentially the dance is
based on the rhythm or beating of the Madal. This is where the
word or name 'Tappa' comes into the dance title.
8. Sorathi Dance:
It is very popular dance of Gurung, A hardly hill people living
along the southern slopes of the Annapurna Himalayas in mid-west
Nepal. They have a very interesting dance tradition. In this dance
the central figure (a male dancer represented as a Jaisinge Raja-
the name of a King) dances in turn, with other female dancers- the
sixteen queens of the Raja and two other male dancers usually
accompany him with their drums. The madals provide the background
music and settings.
many ways in the high mountain areas since it is the only animal,
which can carry loads in high altitudes.It is said that yeti is
seen in the mountains of Nepal. This dance is created for the
rememberence of Yak and Yeti.
9. Newari (Dhime)
It is popular among the Newar Community and preformed during
harvest seasons. This form of dance originated in 13th century
during Malla period.
The Newar Community is predominant in Kathmandu valley. Their
culture is of very high grade. It has become the synonym of the
community as a whole. The Dhime Dance is associated with high
culture. It has great culture sighificance, It is performed in
special accessions. The Dhime is their traditional musical
instrument. It is like a drum and played both side with hand and
This dance belongs to the ethnic community of Sherpa who dwell in
the foot-hills of the Himalayas of Nepal. They are a cheerful
community with plenty of feasting, singing and dancing. Being a
mobile race they are scattered in different places and on
occasions when they enjoy celebrating such meetings with songs and
11. Tamang Selo
The Tamang Community covers around half of the Himalayan zones in
Nepal. This is the largest Tibet Burma ethnic group. Their culture
has played a significant role in the Composite culture of Nepal.
The Tamang Solo is performed on their own important occasions. "Damphu"
their own traditional instrument, is the heart of the Dance. It is
the pride of the community. Both men and women take part in the
dance. Their traditional costumes and ornaments are delightful.
The interesting aspect of the dance is that the young dancers take
this opportunity to choose their life partners
This dance is usually performed by the Magar community who inhabit
the mid-hills of Nepal. This dance is woven around the theme of
love. It is
This is very popular dance of southern part Nepal, popularly known
as 'Terai'. This dance is especially noted for the movements of
the body and facial expressions. It is a romantic dance of the
spring and autumn festivals when the young people attempt to
attract each other.
The Dhimals are the ethnic minority in Nepal. They inhabit in a
particular region of eastern tarai in Nepal. However, they are
rich in their own culture and have significant contribution in the
Nepalese cultural scenario. Agriculture is he main occupation of
the Dhimals apart from agriculture, fishing, weaving and hunting
have also been prominent among them. The dance is always in the
group. Both male and female take part in the dance. Their own
traditional costumes of fishing activities among them.
This dance is popular among the village people of Gandaki Zone in
West Nepal. The ethnic tribe to the area performs this dance round
the year. So this dance is also known as 'Bara Mase Ghatu'. This
dance performed by the unmarried girls among the local people.
Khali dance, Which falls under the genre of the Jhayure dance. It
is suggested that Jhayure is dance to kill time and Khyali
suggests that it is fun filled. As the beat of the madal fills the
evening air, young people sing and dance under the peepal tree.
There is playful bantering and flirtations which could lead into
competitions. Young men can even win wives in such contests if
they can outwit them in their song compilations.
In the Northern Nepal, community of Brahman and Chhetri ladies
together to celebrate festivals. In this very time they dance in
the religious and auspicious occasion of fasting of Satyanarayan's
story, Swosthani and Teej (These all are very popular and holly
festival of Nepal.)
18. Jhijhiya dance:
It is the dance participated by a group of young women. it is
performed during the great festival Vijava Dashami. On their heads
the performing women carry lanterns (pots made of clay) with
several holes and diyos (candles lit with mustard oil) inside,
thus allowing light to come out through the holes. On the lantern
is a dhakan (a cover made of clay) with fire burning the dried
dung cakes. Women purposely dance slowly with lanterns on their
heads so that the holes can be counted. This dance is said to be
influenced by the Tantric cult and preformed mainly to protect
people from evil spirits.
In the community of Kirati Rai, use to worship with full trust to
Lord Shiva and Goddess Parbati praying for every soul may get
peace, may all works get success in the village and many more and
mare crops get in by farmer. This very special dance use to dance
with charming and cheerful faces.
Peacock in Nepal holly bird. It supposed to be the carrier of
Saraswati, the goddess of learning when the clouds gather and the
sound of thunder is heard the excited birds starts to dance.
21. Yak and yeti:
Everyone is aware that Nepal is the land of the Yak and Yeti. The
Yak is very lovable animal. Not only its milk shrunk but it can
also be used in
Lakhe dance is actually devil brought from far of Nepal. After be
agreed to refrain from killing any human being and eating their
faction blood to satisfy with the food offer by the people and be
alert for the safety of public during the Indra Jatra festival
dancing with sound of jingle in the musical background of typical
23. Jhankri or witch doctor:
During the by gone days when the medical facilities were almost
nil in the country sick person used to be taken to these witch
doctors to get cured. Even now in the innermost part of the
mountains and villages this practice is still prevailing among the
illiterate persons. What the witch doctor does to cure a patient
you will see in the dance itself.
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