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Music and Dance

Music and dance in India  are amongst the oldest forms of classical arts with traditions that date back several centuries. The uniqueness of Indian classical dance  and  music   is  that  they that are all mostly devotional  in content .They are also performed  to express a  person's  moods and emotions. Today, Indian classical music can be classified into two broad traditions, north Indian and south Indian. The north Indian tradition is known as Hindustani sangeet. The different forms of Hindustani music are Dhrupad, Dhamar, Khayal, Tappa and Thumri.
The south Indian tradition of music is called Carnatic sangeet. Indian music is based upon two pillars. They are the 'raag', which is the melodic form, and the 'taal', the rhythmic form.The instruments used in Indian classical music are of four types. They are Tantru (stringed), Susir (wind), Avanada (percussion) and Ghana (gongs, bells and cymbals).India is extremely rich in folk music as well. It resonates with the vibrant diversity of the land. Some important forms of music include Ghazals, Qawwali, Abhung and Bhajans.

There is sculptural evidence from all parts of India that underlines the rich tradition of dance that flourished over a thousand years ago. All dance forms were structured around the nine 'rasas' or emotions. They are hasya (happiness), shoka (sorrow), krodha (anger), karuna (compassion), bhibasta (disgust), adhbhuta (wonder), bhaya (fear), viram (courage) and shanta (serenity).

This dance form traces its origins to the nomadic bards of ancient northern India, known as Kathaks, or story tellers.With the advent of Mughals, Kathak was introduced in the King's durbar, thus moving this art from devotion to entertainment.

The traditional dance was performed in temples as a religious offering by the temple dancers. Chhau: The Chhau is a popular dance performed in Orissa, Bihar and West Bengal. It is basically a martial dance where the mask holds the dominant Rasa while the body creates, projects, and develops the moods.

The themes of Manipuriare usually based on the Raas Leela, which depicts the cosmic dance of Lord Krishna and the cowherd maidens.

This is one of the oldest and most popular forms of dance in southern India. Movement, mime and   music   are given equal importance in this dance.

The themes of this dance are mostly derived from the scriptures and   mythology.

It is a combination of  dance and drama where the actors depict characters from Indian mythology, mainly from the Ramayana and the Mahabharata.

  Essentially a solo dance,  it is performed only by women. This dancece depicts love and devotion to the gods.

Folk Dances of India
Almost every village has its own folk dances performed on every possible occasion.The Kud, Bhangra, Lahoor and Hazagiri are some of the dances performed to celebrate the harvest season.There are elaborate dances to mark important events like weddings the birth of a child.

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