Uttarakhand Dance




Uttarakhand is famous for its numerous dance forms. Each of the Garhwal and Kumaon regions possess their own individual and characteristic dance forms, which are striking in their novelty.

Some of the most well known types of dance in the state of Uttaranchal are:

Garhwal Dances:

  • Langvir Nritya
    This is an acrobatic dance practiced by men. Below a long and anchored bamboo pole, musicians play the 'Dhol' and 'Damana' while a dancer acrobat rotates at the top participating in feats using his hands and feet. This dance is popular in Tehri Garhwal area.

  • Barada Nati
    It is a folk dance of the Jaunsar Bhawar region of Chakrata Tehsil in Dehradun, performed prior to religious celebrations or on certain social occasions. Both boys and girls participate, attired in colorful conventional clothes.

  • Shotiya
    Shotiya tribals have characteristic dances like 'Dhurang, and Dhuring' linked with death rituals. The dance resembles the pastorals of Himachal Pradesh or the hunting dances of Nagaland.

  • Pandva Nritya
    This is actually the straightforward relation of the story of Mahabharata through dance and music, which usually takes place on 'Dussehra' and Diwali. It is practiced in Chamoli district and Pauri Garhwal.

    Kumaon Dances:

    • Chhapeli
      Danced in couples, the female with a mirror in her left hand and a colored handkerchief in the other. The male plays a Hudukka on his left shoulder accompanied by others playing the Hurka, Manzira and Flute. The dance, a duet delineates the joys of romance. The woman partner (sometimes a young boy), with a smile and graceful waist movements, dances either in praise of her beauty and charm or mocks her ways of expressing love.

    • Chholiya
      Over a thousand years old, this dance originated with the battling Khasiya Kingdom of Khasdesh, when marriages were performed at sword point. Sustaining tradition, the Rajputs perform it as part of the marriage procession proper. Flashing swords and shield in pairs, to the Dhol, Turi and Ransingwar, they give the impression of a group advancing to attack. The trained dancers hail from Champawat and Almora.

    • Chancheri
      This is a group dance of Danpur Patti of Bageshwar District in Kumaon, where men and women, dance in a semi-circle with slowly increasing pace, expressing unbridled joy.

    Uttaranchal is distinguished by some colorful and vibrant dance forms.



    Last Updated on 4 March 2013



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