Tranquil Reverie

Tuesday, February 13, 2007


'Janapada Jathre' which literally translates to 'Folk Fair' is a fortnightly cultural extravaganza sponsored by the Government of Karnataka. This initiative is a part of the year long 'Survarna Karnataka' celebrations to mark the golden jubilee of the unification of the state in 1956. Folk artists from various districts of the state put up a spectacular show and enthralled the huge audience gathered at Lal Bagh.Events like this go a long way in preserving these age old forms of art which are probably suffering a slow death specially in the urban areas where pubs, malls and multiplexes are the crowd pullers.
Several folk dances were on display by the artists who were resplendent in colourful clothes. Jodi Kamsale, Somana Kunita,Dollu Kunita,Jogathi Nrithya and Jade Kolata were just a few of them. What made this particular Janapada Jathre very special was that all the performances were by women.

Veeragase Nritya, a popular folk dance of Karnataka was performed with great fervour. This is a picture of one of the artists who was a part of the Veeragase which is a symbolic presentation of the heroism and valour of Lord Veerabahadhra.

Young women draped in bright red and saffron saris performed the 'Somana Kunita' which is a popular dance in Dakshina Kannada districts like Hassan and Chikmagalur.

This young girl dressed in the traditional Kodava attire was part of the troupe which performed the Kodava dance 'Ummattata'

The jogathis who are from North Karnataka are a devotees of the Goddess Yellamma. The Jogathi women performed a dance the 'Jogathi Nrithya' in which they balance a pot filled with water on their head.Below is a picture of two jogathi women.

The people of the Lambani tribe are found in North Karnataka. The Lambani women , who were dressed in richly embroidered clothes and heavy jewellery danced to the tune of a traditional Lambani song.

The dances were performed to the tune of an array of musical instruments being played by members of the various troupes. Below are a few of the instuments which caught my attention.