The culture of Nepal is rich and unique. Nepal is a country where art, culture, and religion lie at the heart of its people. The culture heritage of Nepal has evolved over the centuries. All society has its own history and traditions. Traditions and cultures are the outcomes of the continuous process of civilization. Traditional songs, dances, music, arts, folklores, tales, proverbs, beliefs and legends are some units of folk culture.
There are various cultural groups in Nepal with their own long history and traditions. They are the ornaments of Nepal. Nepal is rich in unique cultural groups.
Folk dances are the dances developed by groups of people that reflect the traditional life of the people. A traditional dance of a particular people or areas is called folk dance. Folk dance is performed according to the folk music. It is the dance of people who belong to ‘primitive’ and ancient traditions. Nepal is rich in different folk dances. Different types of folk dances are performed here.
Some of the Folk Dances of Nepal:
Tamang Selo is usually performed by the Tamangs. This dance is performed beating a damphu in solo or in a group. This dance is also known as damphu-natch. In Tamang language, this dance is called tam-syaba.
This dance is generally performed by Chhetris, Brahmins, Gurungs and Magars. The Chhetris and Brahmins perform Chutki to the rhythmic beats of Khaijadi.
This is the dance of Limbus. Young boys and girls hold each other and control each other from side to side and swing their feet in the beat of Chyabrung.
Juhari or Dohori:
This dance is also known as gambling or dual dance. This dance is performed in a group during festivals and fairsand in rodhighar.
Maruni is one of the most loved dances in Nepal. A male dancer disguises as a woman. He wears a long frock-like dress.
Lakhe dance is a very important dance of Nepal. Every year during fall, this dance is performed in the city. It is performed by the Newari community.
This dance is performed by Kirati Rais. They worship Lord Shiva and Goddess Parbati. Chandi dance is performed praying to Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati for peace and success in the village.
Likewise, there are different dances in Nepal.
Nepali Folk Music
Folk music includes traditional music. It is the music transmitted orally. It is music with unknown composers. Folk music is learned through hearing rather than the reading of words or music. Folk music is often associated with activities or life cycle rituals, work, games and folk religions. Folk music is of different types. Some folk music is songs of festivals. Those songs and dances are performed traditionally by different Nepalese communities. They are typical Nepali music.
Nepali Folk Musical Instruments
Folk musical instruments are made of traditional skills and available local materials. Most of them are made of skin, bamboo, wood etc. These instruments are of three types. Along with folk dance and music, various musical instruments are also played in different festivals, jatras and ceremonies of Nepal. A brief introduction of musical instruments played are listed below:
Madal is one of the most popular musical instruments of the Nepalese community. This musical instrument was played first by Magar community. Later on, it gained popularity throughout the country.
Sarangi is the traditional musical instrument of Gandharva community of Kaski district. Sarangi is made of the khiri wood. There are four wires and the sarangi is played by rubbing on the wire.
Narasingha is one of the musical instruments of Panche Baja and made of copper. Narasingha is long and curved like a half circle.
Sahanai is also a part of Panche Baja. Sahanai is made of metal and played by blowing air with our mouth.
Dhol/Dholak is made of wood which is hollow inside and is covered by the leather.
Tyamko is also a part of Panche Baja. It is like a Nagara but small in size.
Dhyangro is used by witch doctor like Dhami-jhankri and made of wood and leather.
Hudko is like a Damaru and used in Mid-Western and Far-Western Region.
Binayo is most popular among the Kiranti people and made by making a hole in a piece of bamboo and thread.
Likewise, there are different folk musical instruments found in Nepal.