India | Orissa

Animal Mask Dance

Animal Mask Dance is mostly prevalent in the villages of southern Orissa, especially in the Ganjam District. It forms an integral part of their socio-cultural make up. The dance is mainly performed during the Thakurani Yatra, when the idols are taken out on the streets. The animal mask performers go on dancing before the procession. The dance is also performed during marriage ceremonies, when the dancers lead the bridegroom\'s procession all the way to the bride's house.

Mainly three animal dances are typical of the area - tiger, bull and horse dances. The dance starts after two dancers get into cane frame and conceal themselves within it. Their legs become the legs of the animals they are representing.

Updated on 10th July, 2005
District: Ganjam


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