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ABU International Dance Festival

The first ABU International Dance Festival, which India’s Public Service Broadcaster, Prasar Bharati has the honour of hosting, is scheduled to be held on 15th January 2017 in Hyderabad, India. This is an independent festival that will grow in stature from year to year.

It aims at introducing the unique diversities of the Asia Pacific region, breaking cultural barriers, and sharing the joys that varied communities across this region feel while they dance.The objective is to create a “bridge” between young people from different parts of the world, through dance as an international language, which could help in convergences and associations, social and artistic. All presentations will be by dancers between the age group of 18 to 25 years of age. The ABU International Dance Festival has been planned keeping young audiences in mind. As dance festivals go, this is a unique festival as it keeps two mediums in mind – stage and television. There are dance film festivals but a Television Dance Festival is a rarity.

ABU International Dance Festival

Date: 12 – 15 January 2017
Venue: Hyderabad, India.

This is Afghanistan National Dance. At the beginning it was performed by Pashtun ethnic people in Afghanistan. It is a collective dance between young boys or girls. It is performed by shaking head and hands in circular shapes periodically. This dance is different among various ethnic groups and is performed in different styles.This is the most ancient dance at this part of Asia and its history reaches to the time of Zoroastrianism in Balkh when it was an official religion in Balkh – Afghanistan. They danced around the fire and read loudly from Avesta verses (Verses from the book of Zoroaster).After the invasion of Arabs in this part of the Asia these types of the dances were banned. But later during the Empire of King Ahmadshah Durani it was gradually restarted. Basically, women can dance with women and men with men. But if the dancers come from the same family then women and men can perform mixes dances in some occasions such as weddings.
Uzundara (Uzundərə) is one of the traditional lyrical dances of Azerbaijan performed by women. This dance gets its name from the Valley of Uzundara (“Long Valley”), a place in the Garabagh region,between Agdam and Goytapa. It was suggested as a dance of bride while they passed through this valley before their weddings. Then it became a wedding dance of the bride and symbolized her separation from the family home. By that time it has lost initial meaning and currently it is one of the most popular woman dances in Azerbaijan. This dance has a very nice lyric and soft music.
Ictimai – Azerbaijan
Meke(Traditional Dance)
Meke are the traditional dances of the indigenous people of Fiji. Men, women and children all participate in the meke, which is a combination of dance and repetitive rhythmic chanting, telling the stories of everyday life, ancient Gods or of battles won, special historical events such as the opening of New building or a church, celebration of a birth of child, a significant death in the family or just happy occasions and functions. Some mekes are performed seated and some standing, and during this performance, you will witness a Medley of both varieties. Indigenous Itaukei culture is very oral and they keep their stories, their history and their genealogy through traditional mekes. This particular meke is a medley of a historical event with celebrations of a happy occasion and an ancient tribal war story.
 FBC – Fiji
The universe is full of energy flows and vibrations, but without consciousness or chaitanya all this activity would be completely unfelt and unknown. Only because there is consciousness can the flow of energy be felt, known and purposefully directed. The entire cosmos too is nothing but a huge vibrating ball of interconnected infinite energy, which has the ability to communicate into infinity with no regard to space and time. In its timeless state, the universe is constantly developing.  “CHAITANYA” explores this concept through movement that defines and discovers all possible flows of energy-individually and collectively.
 DD – India
Andaz-e- Raqs (Traditional)
This is a stylized dance that visualizes sound and extends its aural dimensions into physical space.  Andaz-e- Raqs highlights the contribution of Persian culture to Kathak dance. The graceful elegance of the Persian court lies in the use of breath, eyes, torso, neck and wrists, gradually leading to stylized walks and manipulation of the veil and voluminous, swirling skirt. The dancers translate the sound of instruments into the dynamic and complicated patterns of feet, as well as the linear, angular and circular movements of hand and body.
 DD – India

RRI- Indonesia

Bala Turangga(Traditional)
Bala Turangga is a dance that is inspired by legendary elite horse troops that existed in Majapahit Kingdom era. In Sanskrit, Majapahit is also called as Vilvatikta. Majapahit Kingdom was the biggest empire in Indonesia which reached their supremacy around 14th  century. The center of Majapahit empire was located in an area that is known as East Java in modern-day Indonesia. The territories of Majapahit was said to reach the area known as Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand and the Philippines in modern era. Bala Turangga dance expresses the greatness and power of Bhayangkari horse troops that consisted of men and women, who were the front troops during ancient era that the Majapahit relied on to reach their glory. The movement presented in the dance was originated from dynamic Javanese dances with a strong presence of the mystic sphere that embodies the great horse troops. The costumes and the make-up of the dancers was inspired by various Indonesian cultures delivered in modern style.Kabaret Baliano(Contemporary)
Kabaret Baliano is a dance rooted in Bali, a famous island in Indonesia as one of the world’s top tourist destinations. This dance’s choreography was inspired by the basic movements of the exotic Balinese dance, such as Legong dance and Pendet dance, but performed in modern style so the aesthetics of Indonesian tradition can be enjoyed by international audiences. The ideas of the costumes came from various cultures that blend perfectly in yellow-gold costumes with Balinese dancer’s hair pieces presented with modern touch.

Tari Saman(Traditional)
Tari Saman is a traditional dance from Gayo in Aceh province (the east tip of Sumatra island) in Indonesia that is usually displayed to celebrate important events in the local practice. Tari Saman is one of religious mediums that reflect education, religion, manners, heroism, teamwork and togetherness, with its lyrics containing courtesy. The unique fact about this bells and whistles dance is that it is accompanied by the dancers’ voice combined with fast clapping on hands, chests and thighs. It is guided with a leader who uses tambourine to cue the dancers. Accuracy and promptness is required by the dancers to accelerate the harmony of Tari Saman.
 TVRI – Indonesia

              PSM – Maldives
Journey with us on a festive passage into time, discovering the rich history and culture of the Maldives isles, depicted through age-old dances and beats, which has brought joy to Maldivians for hundreds of years. The smooth sways to the traditional beats of bodu beru, has been the core of Maldivian folklore and culture, taking dance and song through hundreds of variations that sprung all through the history of the two thousand isles. The performance has been organized by the Republic of Maldives and will portray a mixture of cultural presentations such as traditional forms of singing and various types of folk dances. All songs in the performance are sung in the native language, ‘Dhivehi’, which is unique to the Maldivian culture. The songs depict the honor and privilege of being an independent country that is able to follow their own culture, desired religion and way of life. It also describes traditional celebrations carried out on occasions such as Eid.
CTC – Philippines
Singkil,  a dance originating from Lanao del Sur, Mindanao is said to be a dance of Muslim royalty. To the rhythmic clapping of bamboo poles, the dancers intertwine expertly through criss-crossed bamboos, the ladies dress in elegant Muslim costumes waving great big fans.

CTC – Philippines
The Sarimanok is derived from a totem bird of the Maranao people, called Itotoro. According to the Maranai people, the Itototro is a medium to the spirit world via its insween twin spirit bird called Inikadowa.The Sarimanok is the legendary bird that has become an ubiquitous symbol of Maranao art. It is depicted as a fowl with colourful wings anbd feathered tail, holding a fish on its beaks or talons. The head is profusely decorated with scroll, leaf and spirral motifs. It is said to be a symbol of good fortune

         MTRK – Uzbekistan
Every region in Uzbekistan has its own style and way of dances. One of them is “Lezgi”. Lezgi is a dance from the Khorezm region which is extremely popular not only in Uzbekistan but worldwide. They are energetic, rousing and very temperamental. In contrast to slow and quiet dances of Bukhara and Samarkand, Khorezm dances are initially very rhythmic, and the pace becomes irrepressible by the end of the dance. Perhaps, “Lezgi” is the most well-known Khorezm dance today. This dance is characterized by movements on bent legs, shaking with shoulders and hands with small bells attached. Commonly the Lezgi dance consists of three parts. The dance will start slowly and then the rhythm of the music and dance performance itself will speed up becoming faster and faster. This dance is performed by the two of our dancers. The main idea of this dance is the competition between the two dancers. In the first part performers dance together. In the second and third parts of the performance, the dancers compete to show their individual abilities to the audience. At the end their friendship will glorify and the third part will be performed together.
ASTRO – Malaysia

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