Manipuri – A Classical Dance In India
Manipuri is coming from Manipur the north-eastern state of India and the indigenous people of this valley are known to be the dance-expert as the Gandharva’s, mentioned in the epic Ramayana, Mahabharata and other religious scriptures. This style of classical dance is purely religious and its aim is at spiritual experience.
The daily activities of Manipuri people include the development of music and dance through religious festivals. Dance is not only a medium of worship and enjoyment but also a door to the divine, but indispensable for all socio-cultural ceremonies.
From the religious point of view and from the artistic angle of vision, Manipuri Classical Form of dance is claimed to be one on the most modest, softest and mildest but the most meaningful dances of the world.
Manipuri dances most obliging aspect of culture is that, it has retained the ancient ritual based dances and folk dances along which is later developed classical Manipuri dance style. Among all the classical categories, ‘Ras Leela’ – a highly evolved dance drama, choreographed on ‘Vaishnavite Padavalis’ composed by mainly eminent Bengali poets and there were some Manipuri Gurus, which is the highest expression of artistic genius, devotion and excellence of the Manipuris.
Manipuri is one of the most beautiful dance styles of India which is nurtured in the mountainous region of the northeast; it takes its name fromthe area called Manipur, which is now a state.
The word literally means a jewel of a land, and the state is set like a gem in the verdant hills. The legend great significance which goes that the gods drained a lake in the beautiful countryside in order to find a place to dance.
So that way dance is an inherent part of the rituals of daily life, such as weddings and homage to ancestors in their tradition. This particular dance was initially performed only in temples as any other Indian classical dance. The major attraction of Manipuri dance style is the beautiful costumes of the dancers.
This dance style got good encouragement of Rabindranath Tagore. Unlike many other dance forms, Manipuri has retained its ancient ritual based dances and folk dances along with the later developed classical Manipuri dance style.
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