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Homepage>Navratri>Garba and Raas

Navratri - Navdurga - Garba and Raas  -

Sharadiya Navaratra (September 21st to September 29th, 2017)

| What is Navratri ? | Significance of Navratri | Navratri Pooja |

Kalash Sthaapna in Navratri | Nine forms of Goddess Durga | Navratri Legend |

Goddess Durga Aarti | Durga Chaalisa | Navratri Celebrations |

Navratri and Garba dance | 108 names of Goddess Durga |

 


Garba:
Garba Dance is a popular folk Dance of Gujarat. A graceful, rather unique dance associated with the raas lila of Krishna and the gopis (female cowherds). It is believed that Lord Krishna popularized the Ras dance, Usha, the grand daughter-in-law of Lord Krishna gets the credit for popularizing the Lasya Nritya, which came to be known as Garba Dance. This dance is performed by ladies on the Navaratri days, Sharad Purnima, Vasant Panchami, Holi and such other festive occasions. The word Garba is derived from the word Garbha Deep meaning a lamp inside a perforated earthen pot. The light inside the perforated earthen pot symbolised the embryonic life. In this folk dance, ladies place the pot with the lamp on their heads and move in circles, singing in time measure by clapping their palms or snapping their fingers, to the accompaniment of folk instruments. Formerly associated with the legend of Krishna, Garbha is now a regular feature during the Navratri puja (nine nights in honor and worship of the goddess Durga).

Garba songs are mostly in praise of Mother Goddess Amba describing her form, powers, and invoking her blessings. Also there are Garbas describing seasons and social themes of domestic ends and married life.

Musical accompaniments to Garba are Damru, Tabla, Nagara, pot drum, percussion, Ektaro, Ravan hattho, Jantar, Pavo, shehani, murli, turi, and taturi.

 


Raas
Raas
which is supposed to belong to Kutch and Saurashtra is performed all over Gujarat. The rasa traditions are as old as the Puranic period. In various parts of the country, Rasa are danced in different manners. The main feature of Rasa is dancing in a circle by men and woman, to the accompaniment of musical instruments and keeping  time either by clapping or beating of two sticks. The number of dancers go from 8,16, 32  up to 64 couples, who also sing the song. There are three varieties of Rasaka described.

  • Danda Rasaka-Rasa dance where Danda or sticks are used.

  • Mandala  or Tala Rasaka-Rasa  dance where clapping is used.

  • Lata Rasaka-Rasa dance where dancers cling to each other  and dance like a creeper to a tree.

Raas Nritya is a form of dance performed by lord Krishna with Gopikas. The Dandia variety of the Raas Nritya of Gujarat is generally performed by a group of youthful persons, both males and females, who move in circles to measured steps, beating time with small sticks (called dandia) singing to the accompaniment of Dhol, Cymbals, Zanz, flute or Shehnai. Now a days Dandia variety or Danda Rasaka is most popular dance form which is performed by the dancers during the Navratri and is popularly known as Dandiya Raas.

The Gof variety of the raas is an intricate performance wherein the performers holding coloured strings attached to a top, move in circles weaving and unweaving different patterns.

The Mers of Saurashtra are known for their folk dance called the Mer Raas. White shepherds  perform what is called the Gher Raas. The Gheria Raas is a dance performed by the agriculturists of south Gujarat.


 

 

 

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