Baagh Naach Folk Dance, Odisha

Baagh Naach which literally means Tiger dance is a popular folk dance of the Eastern Coastal State of Odisha in India. It originated in the Subarnapur and Ganjam district of the state. This renowned dance form includes male dancers painting their body with yellow and black stripes, impersonating a tiger. It is commonly practised in certain festivals or special occasions. The Hindu month of Chaitra is when this unique form of dance is prevalently performed in various festivals in the state of Odisha.

Baagh Naach is a group dance performed by male dancers. The dancers even attached a tail along with the body paint to complete the look of the ferocious wild beast. The artists have to undergo vigorous training routines for years for performing the unique acrobatic stunts to resemble the movements of a fierce animal like tiger. The postures and the movements need to be energetic and swift in order to imitate the majestic predator.

The dance movements are accompanied with the drums and bells which enhances the performances of the Baagh Naach. The artists make sounds like hissing which sounds quite similar to the stealthy animal like a tiger. One need to have rigorous practice to perform the stunts with appropriate synchronizing with the musical instruments played during the performances. Traditionally, the male artists bring people from their homes to gather audiences for the performance. With its growing popularity, Baagh Naach is taught in various dance schools of Odisha along with other folk and tribal dance of the region.

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