Panel Discussion Throws Light On Odisha’s Folk Dance Forms

Bhubaneswar: Odisha is as rich in dance forms as it is in natural resources and is home to 19 different types of dance forms such as – Odissi, Gotipua, Mahari, Chaiti Ghodanacha, Bagha Nacha, Chhau, Dhemsha, Sambalpuri, Ghumura, Dhanda Nacha, Koya, Paika Nacha, Naga Nacha, Ranapa, Jodi Shankha, Karama Nacha, Chadheya Chadheyani, Gouda Nacha, Gadaba dance. However, with time, the dance forms have started to fade away.

To analyze the causes and the problems of the same and derive certain solutions to ensure the preservation of Odisha’s folk dances, a panel discussion on ‘Folk dances of Odisha – problems and preservation’ was recently held at Utkal Rangamancha, Odissi Research Centre, Jaydev Vihar here.

The panel discussion was led by four panelists – noted Odissi singer Sangeeta Gosain, renowned Odissi dancer Meera Das, popular Odissi soloist in the International arena Rahul Acharya and research scholar Rabi Ratan Sahu.

Sangeeta Gosain enlightened audience about the origin of folk dance form and why folk dancers should be given importance and equal attention financially for keeping the tradition alive.

Meera Das, on the other hand, gave emphasis on maintaining the purity of folk dance and suggested that attempt should be made to identify and document the all the dance forms intricately through audio visual medium.

“Folk dance is the basis of the classical dance forms. We first need to educate ourselves on folk and classical dance forms then we can stop its dilution,” said Rahul Acharya.

Rabi Ratan Sahu, who has done extensive research in the field, informed audience about the inability of true folk dancers to reach its audience at various programmes and festivals. He suggested efforts should be made to preserve and maintain every folk dance forms in appropriate and individual platforms.

The event was attended by students from art, music and dance institutes in the city.

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