State artistes who are here all the way from their native villages are making evenings at Pragati Maidan really memorable. On Monday, as the fair opened up for general public, artistes from Himachal Pradesh and Assam showcased their folk songs and dances, leading the State Day Celebrations at Lal Chowk Theatre. In the packed open theatre, Himachali women dressed in traditional outfits started the show with a ‘deepak’ dance.
It was followed by a traditional dance from Chamba, Ghurai. The art form narrates the story of a queen Suhi and the sacrifices made by her to protect the region. Dressed in red and yellow outfits and adorned with heavy jewellery, women moved in circles with grace. The genre of the dance form shifted to Suketi Naat, a typical dance from the Mandi region. Men dressed in blue kurtas and women in red lehngas with flower baskets on their back gave a glimpse of Himachali traditions. This was soon followed by the Punjabi giddha, also known as the Padwa - from Solan, which was then followed by the Harnatya dance from Kullu. Artistes also brought on stage Dhamakra dance from Hamirpur.
Not to be left behind, the Himachal and Punjab celebrations Assam Day commenced with the Sattirya dance performed by students of Luit Konwar Rudra Barua State College of Music. The dance form depicts the childhood days of Lord Krishna. Introducing the audiences to the richness of Assam’s cultural tradition, Bardaichikhla – one of the fascinating folk dances of Bodos was also presented on stage. Dedicated to goddess of storm and water, the dance was performed by young girls.
Later it was a musical performance by the son and daughter-in-law of Assamese music maestro late Dr. Bhupen Hazarika which stole the show. Mayukh Hazarika and Laily Dutta Hazarika entertained the audience with songs and the show ended with Bihu.