Ten Top Classical Dance Forms of India
The Indian classical dance category encompasses a wide range of performance arts taking their cues from musical theater styles, with roots in religious texts such as Natyashastra. According to various scholars, there are between eight and more classical dances.
In addition to Bharatanatyam and Kathak, the Academy recognizes eight other forms - Odissi, Kathakali, Sattriya, Manipuri, as well as Mohiniyattam. Among the list are Chhaau, Yakshagana, and Bhagavata Mela, according to scholars such as Drid Williams. Chhau is also on the classical list of the Indian Ministry of Culture. This is a traditional regional dance. In the diversity of styles, costumes, and expressions, they represent a unity of core ideas in Telugu, Tamil, Sanskrit, Kannada, Hindi, or any other Indian language.
A classical dance performance from India is considered to be a form of music-dance performance art, related to mythological rituals and the Saivam Epic, as well as the folk entertainment based on Tamil or other Dravidian language plays. Most of these dance forms are from the southern peninsula, such as Bharatnatyam, Kuchipudi, Mohiniattam, and Kathakali. Kathak is a north Indian music genre whose compositions are predominantly in Sanskrit or Hindi. Manipuri, Odissi, and Sattiya use the language of the region they belong to, as well as Sanskrit and Hindi.
In a temple, either inside the sanctum or near it, these forms of art are performed. Traveling troupes of performers have also performed folk entertainment in temple grounds or fairgrounds, typically in rural settings; alternatively, they have performed in the halls of royal courts or on public squares during festivals.