Odisha’s tiger dance to wow Kolkata on International Tiger Day

Bhubaneswar: The vibrant choreography of Odisha’s traditional tiger dance and insights shared by noted woman elephant trainer Parbati Barua from Assam will headline International Tiger Day events at the Indian Museum in Kolkata on July 29.

Wildlife enthusiasts will be in for a treat with three key events themed on the magnificent animal – an exhibition from Indian Museum’s prestigious collection, a panel discussion involving leading Indian conservationists and the age-old folk ritual from Odisha called “bagh nrutya”.
Narayan Maharana, president of a government-aided organisation reviving the folk dances of the State, will present the ‘bagh nrutya’ with his group. In this 17th-century art form, originating from Ganjam district, dancers daub their entire body with yellow and black paint to resemble the tiger.

Accessorised with a set of giant hand-crafted ears, a cloth tail and an anklet on one foot, the dancers attempt to invoke the tiger goddess through their dance steps.

The day-long events organised by the Society for Heritage and Ecological Researches (SHER) and the Association for Conservation and Tourism in collaboration with the Museum will be open to all.

According to Joydip Kundu of SHER, in addition to Barua, the panelists, including Corbett Tiger Reserve director Samir Sinha and Sundarban Biosphere Reserve director Pradeep Vyas, will discuss tigers in the context of a living heritage.