Saturday, 17 March 2012

Jhumar or Jhoomar

Jhoomar Dance of Saraiki Culture

Jhumar or Jhoomar is a lively form of music and dance that originated in the Bahawalpur, Multan and Balochistan, but thrived specially in Sandalbar areas of Punjab. It is slower and more rhythmic form of Bhangra. The word "Jhumar" comes from Jhum/Jhoom, which means Swaying. The songs evoke a quality which reminds of swaying. Though the content of these songs is varied - they are usually love with emotional songs too. The Jhumar is a dance of happiness.

Jhumar is performed during the harvest season in Punjab. It is a living demonstration of the happiness of men. The dance is mostly performed by the Balochi and Saraiki people of Southern Punjab.
Any time is Jhumar-time especially during Melas, weddings and other major functions and celebrations. The emphasis of Jhumar is recreating the gaits of animals and birds. The movement of animals, the ploughing of the field, sowing of seeds and harvesting are shown in the original progression. The dance is also performed in circle, to the tune of emotional songs.
The costumes of the dancers are very colorful.
Dancing Style
Performed exclusively by men, it is a common feature to see three generations - father, son and grandson - dancing all together at weddings. The dance is without acrobatics. Each region of Southern Punjab has its own variation of Jhomar.
The movement of the arms only is considered its main forte. Feet are musically placed in front and backwards and turnings are taken to the right, sometimes the dancers place their one hand below the ribs on the left and gesticulate with the right hand. This dance does not tire out its performers and it is normally danced on moonlight nights in the villages away from the habitation.
The dancers of this dance let-off a sound, "Dee Dee" in tune with the beat of the dance which adds to its grace. This dance has also been integrated into Bhangra.

Types of Jhoomar
There are four main types of Jhoomar, each of which has a different mood and is therefore suited to different occasionally, reason of its predominating mood. They are:
§  Satluj Jhoomar
§  Beas Jhoomar
§  Chenab Jhoomar
§  Multani Jhoomar

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