Garaga dance, also known as the Vessel Dance, is popular in the coastal districts of Andhra Pradesh
and the border districts of Karnataka
and Tamil Nadu
. Garaga means pot or vessel and the dance played with a vessel on the head is known as Garaganrityam.
Garaga is an ancient art form, which was originally presented by a class of priests called Asadis to appease the village Goddess. With the passage of time, the dance has acquired many add-ons and different styles. The brass vessels are painted and decorated with vermilion turmeric and the dancers keep those on their heads. Without moving their heads, they move their bodies and limbs very fast. The dancers wear colored cloths with bunch of margosa leaves in hand, worshipping the Goddess