Traditional Art Forms of Andhra Pradesh

Andhra Pradesh has the rich culture and a huge collection of traditional arts. Which emerges in the form of drama, music and dance.Classical Dance and Kuchipudi is the most popular in the world. There are also other art forms in Andhra Pradesh which you will find below:

1. Kuchipudi

Kuchipudi is the traditional dance of this state. Kuchelapuri is a small village in Andhra Pradesh. In 300 BC or earlier, this art form started as a way for living for many. It was performed by male Brahmins.

Just like any other Indian dances, it is a mixture of expression and music. Thalam, Violin, Surpeti, Tanpura and many other musical instruments would be played while dancing. It is a very vivid and elegant dance form to watch.

Dancers sometime deliver certain dialogues during the dance too. Usually Indian mythological stories would be showcased with this dance form.

One of the type of Kuchipudi is called Tarangam. In this form, the dancers would perform all the steps while stands on edges of a small brass plate.

In another form, they have to place a pot filled with water till its brim on their head and dance without spilling it. It would be stunning and sometimes thrilling to watch them dance more elegant moves with stunning properties in hand.

There are many authorized universities and small schools where you can learn this dance form from scratch.

2. Kalamkari Paintings

This is one of the many types of painting that you can find in this country. What make this painting rare and unique is the materials they use in making these paintings. The brush used in this painting is a quill. The colours are made from vegetables.

In machilipatnam, you can find printed wood blocks that are very common souvenirs. This painting started in 10th century when there was a flourishing trade between India and Persia. This painting was taught by Persian traders. This painting is done through 12 stages. It takes a lot of time and patience to complete.

Cloths, hangings, covers and many other materials can be decorated with this painting. This piece of art is something that you ought to take back with you when you leave Andhra Pradesh.

3. Buta Bommalu

It is a form of puppet show dance. Buta Bommalu can be roughly translated as basket puppets. The puppets are made out of bamboo stripes which are commonly used for making baskets.

The puppets are made into a large basket like structure into with the performers can get in. It would be hollow inside. The dancers enter this puppet basket and start dancing as per the music.

Usually the puppet basket would be about eight feet in height and three feet in radius. It is not an easy task to dance with this puppet around them.

The puppet figure is connected with the dancer through a small string that is tied around the shoulder and waist of the dancer. You can find this form of dancing during any religious festivals.

Most of the figures resemble a deity and they usually showcase some religious story through these puppet shows. If you are in West Godavari or East Godavari district during any festival time, you ought to watch this dance form.

4. Lambadi

This is a traditional tribe dance of this state. There are a lot of folk dances like Dhamal, Dappu, Mathuri, Gobbi and many others. Lambadi is the most common and popular one of all. Lambadi tribes live a nomadic life. They roam throughout the state and settle in a place for a few days, perform this dance, earn some money and move to another place.

The dancers would dress with various jewellery and other properties and dance to showcase common tasks that people perform like a farmer harvesting, planting crops and so on. One important aspect of this dance is that it is danced only by women.

During festivals, these dancers are found commonly in the streets. The dance does not have a very high recognizing like Kuchipudi or others, but, it is very interesting and appealing to watch and enjoy.

5. Nirmal Painting

This is a type of ancient painting in which herbs and minerals are used as dye. The most common colour used in this painting is the golden colour which is made from mixture of gums and herbs.

You can find a lot of epic stories explained by these paintings. You can find a lot of elegant craftsmen of this style of painting in Hyderabad.

This painting was first introduced to Mughals by traders who got attracted by its beauty and promoted this painting by brining many craftsmen to the city.

6. Kolattam

Kolattam is the dance of stick. The dance starts with the dancers in a large circle and they split into two concentric circles. The dancers use a stick which is decorated with colours as their main property. There are about 50 different type of Kolattam and each one is different, elegant and appealing.

The dancers in the inner circle play music while the ones in the outer dance according to it. This is a must watch folk dance of this state. There are different verses of this dance prevailing today in this state.

7. Bhamakalpam

This is a type of dance that was originated for the pure Kuchipudi. In this, the most common dance is the love fight between Krishna and his wives. It is a dance style that was created by yogis in 17th century. This is one of the very few traditional dances that are performed by both the genders. This style of dance is usually mono-play where the main character recites the story while performing appropriate steps.

A lot of different musical instruments are used during this dance style. All the ornaments wore by the dancers are made of wood to be lightweight for the dancers to carry them around while dancing.

8. Veeranatyam

Veeranatyam can be translated as the dance of brave. According to myth, Lord Shiva got furious after his wife humiliated him. In this anger, he removed his hair dressing and started dancing furiously. It is said that this dance destroyed the place where he was humiliated.

Thus, this dance is a dance of anger. The costumes, movements, colours and music represents anger. This dance is traditionally performed on the banks of the river Godavari. It is also performed to honour Lord Shiva.

Thus, it is an important form of art that you can enjoy during any festival related to Lord Shiva like Maha Shivaratri.

This dance is usually performed by man. The first stage of dance starts with the dancers holding a plate on which burning camphor is placed. They carry this plate on their hands and dance till the fire burns out.

In the next stage, the dancer dances with a large pole with bells attached to it. The next stage of dance starts with dancers dancing with spears and tridents in their arms, elbows and mouth.

9. Burrakatha

This was the form of entertainment before media was born. Three or more people join together to recite a story with rhythm and small songs. A stringed instrument in the form of bow is used to make sounds while reciting the story.

The main story teller recites the story while the others add background effects and echo effects to the story. Sometimes the side tellers make jokes and also dance to increase the appeal of the show.

10. Dhimsa

It is a tribal dance of tribes in Araku hill station. A lot of people visit Araku during April to witness this dance during their festival. This is also called as peacock dance.

The dancers hold bunches of peacock feathers in their hands and dance in a zigzag manner like a serpent dance. There are a lot of types of Dhimsa dance and it would be very vivid, vibrant and entertaining to watch.

A lot of art lovers visit this valley during April to witness this dance.

There are a lot of other crafts that you can find in this state like bronze castling, Dokra crafts and others. There are many specialists in these crafts who can create these crafts in front of you and teach a few skills to you too.

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