A unique folk dance programme known as ‘Sujalam Sufalam Bharat’ showcasing the folk dance styles of all the 28 states was held at the Savitribai Phule auditorium in Dombivlii. Performed by 60 dancers from Devendra Shelar Dance Academy, it was a rhythmic delight and a rare spectacle exposing the varied cultures of the different states and the dancers danced with lot of enthusiasm and zeal.
With concept and guidance from Guru Ramesh Purav and the executive director being Devendra Shelar, it was not an easy task to train and prepare the dancers.
The training for over four months has ultimately come out with wonderful result. To watch the programme for two and a half hours, wherein you get to see unity in diversity, as each state has its own culture and tradition and folk dances being the dance of the people and by the people, it is a social dance as the entire society partcipates, which includes both men and women. The dances are normally performed either on auspicious occasions like the birth of child, marriage or the harvest season. There are dances that are also performed as temple rituals.
It is interesting to note here that most of the classical dances are someway or the other rooted in folk dances and in classical dances too one can find folk elements. While folk dances are completely social, pertaining to day to day activities, classical dances go a step further in relating to the Almighty, hence is spiritual
The announcements of each and every dance with suitable commentary in Marathi and Hindi with the audio visuals of the particular state added colour to the entire presentation. In order to cater to a wider reach, the commentary should also be dubbed in English.
The states and the dances performed were Arunachal Pradesh (Monapa), Assam (Bihu), Nagaland (Naga), Meghalaya (Wangala), Manipur (Kabui Jagoi) (Simalam), Mizoram (Chero Bamboo), Tripura ((Hojagiri), Sikkim (tamang), West Bengal (Chavoo), Bihar (Jijia), Jharkahand (Jhoomar), Orissa (Sambalpuri), Chatisgarh (Panthi), Uttar Pradesh (Mayur Nritya), Jammu and Kashmir (Dhamali), Kerala (Thiruvathirakal), Himachal Pradesh (Kinori Nati), Tamil Nadu (Kolattam), Madhya Pradesh (Raee), Uttarakhand (Harul) (Jaunsari), Andhra Pradesh (Dappu), Hariyana (Ghoomar), Karnataka (Dholu Kunita), Rajashthan (Tera tali was not performed), Goa (Gawada), Gujarat (Garba Dandia Raas), Punjab (Bhangra) and the last dance from Maharashtra known as the Koli dance.
While most of the dancers were trying to do their best, some of them were lagging behind, hence the team spirit was affected. Moreover, in folk dances, where the movements are similar, it is essential to maintain perfect uniformity in movements which again is not easy and that needs a lot of practice.
The best performed dances were Thiruvathirakali, Kolatttam, Ghoomar in which women are attired in long skirts that keep swirling around, creating a fine spectacle and the Bhangra dance from Punjab which is considered a dance of joy and happiness and is normally performed during the harvest season. Prof Kamalakar Sontakke praised the efforts of the youngsters and announced that they deserve complete encouragement. Otherwise it is not possible to host a show of such a dimension. Kudos to the entire team.