Kalbelia dance

Kalbelia Dance: About | Origin | Element | Costumes | Facts 2021

About Kalbelia Dance

The Kalbelia dance, which is performed as a form of celebration, is an important part of Kalbelia culture. Their dances and songs are a source of pride and identity for the Kalbelias, and they represent this community of snake charmers’ creative adaptation to changing socioeconomic conditions and their own role in rural Rajasthani society.

The Kalbelia dance is an Indian folk dance from the state of Rajasthan. It is also known as the ‘Sapera Dance’ or the ‘Snake Charmer Dance.’ The Kalbeliya dance is primarily performed by the ‘Kalbelia’ tribe of Rajasthan.

It is one of the most sensual forms of dance. The Kalbeliya community is the primary performer of the dance. It is performed to commemorate a happy occasion in the community. The Kalbelia dance is performed by both men and women.

The dance is mostly performed by the tribe’s female members. Nowadays, the dance form is recognized as a traditional folk dance of India, and it is taught and modernized with the help of modern music. The origins of this dance can be traced back to a serpent yogic dancer who traveled the desert, where kings found divine blessings. The dance is well-known in Udaipur, Ajmer, Chittorgarh, and other desert states. Kalbeliya or Kalbelia is now performed by both men and women.

The people of Rajasthan celebrate it enthusiastically. Though the dance festival is held in Pushkar, Bikaner, Barmer, Jaisalmer, Jodhpur, and Jaipur, the most extravagant and vibrant celebration is held in Jaipur and is widely celebrated. This dance form is performed by both men and women in many parts of India on various occasions.

Kalbelia is the tribe that created this dance form. They moved from place to place because they were nomadic. That is why the dance is well-known and popular throughout Rajasthan.

Origin Of Kalbelia Dance

The Kalbelia dance is a Rajasthani tribal dance. This tribe is a Rajasthani community that was known in ancient times to move frequently from one location to another rather than staying and building their homes in one location. The Kalbelia tribe’s main occupation is known to be catching snakes and trading snake venom.

They’re also known as Saperas or Snake Charmers. On the occasion of joy in the Kalbelia community, females perform Kalbelia folk dance to the tunes of Been. There is no organized training system or school, as well as no manuscripts or written text, to teach and learn Kalbelia songs and dance. This folk art is passed down from one generation to the next.

This tribe is a nomadic tribe from Rajasthan that was basically snake-charmers and has been tabooed as a scheduled and untouchable caste. They were outlawed and shunned by society, so they made a living by discovering cures for snake bites, ridding people’s homes of snakes, educating tourists about snakes, and, of course, performing snake dances. Since the Middle Ages, this tribe has lived and followed the same routine, traditions, and lifestyle, and has learned to earn a living through all of these means of occupation and employment.

The men used to make money from all of these activities, and the women of this tribe would occasionally dance on the streets during festivals in order to extort money from the rich. The Rajasthan Ministry of Tourism spotted a young girl named Gulabi Sapera on the streets. Her clan was opposed to her performing, but despite all of the bans and opposition, she managed to perform this art form on stage and gradually became the face of this dance form.

The songs and dances are passed down from generation to generation as part of an oral tradition for which no texts or training manuals exist. Song and dance are a source of pride for the Kalbelia community, serving as a symbol of their identity at a time when their traditional traveling lifestyle and role in rural society are dwindling.

Kalbelia Dance Elements

Poongi, also known as Been, is a traditional musical instrument used in Kalbelia dance. Poongi is a type of woodwind musical instrument used by the Kalbelia tribe while snake-catching. Dufli, Morchang, Dholak, Khanjari, and Khuralio are other traditional musical instruments used by the Kalbelia tribe in Kalbelia dance. When these instruments are combined with poongi, they produce sensual and amazing music.

The Kalbelia dance, which is performed as a form of celebration, is an important part of Kalbelia culture. Their dances and songs are a source of pride and identity for the Kalbelias, and they represent this community of snake charmers’ creative adaptation to changing socioeconomic conditions and their own role in rural Rajasthani society.

The dancers move their bodies in time with the music. Dancers move like snakes by sensually swirling and twirling their bodies. They open and close their arms repeatedly just above the breast to add a sensual touch to their dance. The highlight of the finger grasping gestures is the main dance move. Foot stamping and acrobatic bending actions appear frequently throughout the dance. The hip movement is delicate, but it should be noticeable enough to tease the viewers. Every viewer is hypnotized by this folk dance.

Kalbelia Dance Costume

The main performers in Kalbelia dance are female dancers who dance and swirl, mimicking the movements of a serpent. Dancers are dressed in Kalbelia tribe traditional garb. Female Kalbelia dancers wear Angrakhi on their upper bodies. The female Kalbelia dancers wear Odhani on their heads. They dress in a long skirt with a wide circumference on the lower body. This long skirt worn by Kalbelia dancers is known as a Lehenga or Ghagra. This entire dress is primarily black in colour, with red decorative laces. The black dress has silver thread embroidery in various patterns that resembles a black snake with white spots or stripes. Mirror work on the dresses of Kalbelia dancers is also frequently discovered. Kalbelia dancers are decked out in a plethora of traditional jewelry.

Kalbelia dance

The dancers are women dressed in flowing black skirts who dance and swirl in the manner of a serpent. The upper body cloth is known as Angrakhi, and a piece of cloth worn on the head is known as Odhani. The lower body cloth is known as Lengha. All of these clothes are mixed in red and black hues and embroidered in such a way that when these dancers perform, these clothes represent a combination of colors that are soothing to the eyes as well as the environment.

Angrakhis are worn by the performers on their upper bodies. Angrakhi sleeves can be half-length or full-length. Odhani is covering the dancers’ heads. Ghagra is also spelled Lehenga. Kalbelia dancers wear a long skirt during a performance. The ghagra has a very wide circumference, which is vividly highlighted when the dancers twirl.

Kalbelia Dance Dresses By Sanskriti Fancy Dresses!

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Rajasthani Kalbelia lehenga Dress

We will help you with all your costume-related needs and the problem of searching for jewelry and costumes is also resolved. We are one of the best suppliers who provide dance costumes on rent to the performers and you can also buy the costumes from.us according to your needs. 

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Kalbelia Dance Facts

  • Kalbelia Dance and songs have been named to UNESCO’s list of Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.
  • The dance is an integral part of their culture and performed by men and women.
  • The dance movements and the costumes of their community bear a resemblance to that of the serpents.
  • The Kalbelia dance, performed as a celebration, is an integral part of Kalbelia culture.
  • Their dances and songs are a matter of pride and a marker of identity for the Kalbelias and they represent the creative adaptation of this community of snake charmers to changing socioeconomic conditions and their own role in rural Rajasthani society.
  • The dancers are women in flowing black skirts who dance and swirl, replicating the movements of a serpent. The upper body cloth is called Angrakhi and a piece of cloth worn on the head known as Odhani similarly the lower body cloth is called Lengha.
  • The lyrics are generated spontaneously by the Kalbelia masters, which aids in the improvisation of the live dance performance.
  • All of these clothes are mixed in red and black hues and embroidered in such a way that when these dancers perform, these clothes represent a combination of colors that are soothing to the eyes as well as the environment.