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4 Dances in Thailand – Traditional Thai Dance Forms and Their Origin

4 Dances in Thailand – Traditional Thai Dance Forms and Their Origin

Dance is more than just body movements; it is an art, an emotion, an expression, or a representation of a place. Flowing through the rhythmic beats of the music to perform art or convey a message is primarily the idea behind the dance. A type of dance can also be religious when a powerful act is performed to gain powers from the Almighty as part of a ritual. Another form of dance that contributes to the culture of a place or community and is mainly for recreational purposes is folk dance. While some cultural dances are intense and powerful, others are elegant and calm to the onlookers.

Thailand’s traditional folk dance is graceful, and the dancers wear intricate costumes. Thai dance is performed at cultural events, festivals, theaters, or even hotels in Thailand; doesn’t that sound fascinating enough? Classical Thai dance focuses on detailed costumes (painted in gold) and choreography, while folk dance tends towards acting. Let’s take a detailed look at each of them to understand Thai culture.

Classical & Folk Dances in Thailand

This is one of Thailand’s most common dance forms; if you haven’t seen it, your trip to Thailand is incomplete. It is believed to have its roots in the archeological source. In earlier times, the dance was performed by young girls at the royal court, which was only open to a specific audience. The dance, which is still performed today after years of influence from different cultures, mainly Indian, represents the Thai version of Ramayana. A few are Khon, Lakhon, and Fawn, the many dance forms rooted in the past and still widely practiced across the country.

Golden robes, floral hairstyles, and embellished headpieces add breathtaking appeal to the performance.

Khon 

The Khon dance form, which is widely practiced throughout Thailand, is easily recognized even by tourists in Thailand due to the large number of people involved in this performance. The dancers wear an elaborate and colorful Khon mask, symbolizing the legacy that has been around for a long time. In this country. A whole group of members, including monkeys, storytellers, demons, singers, performers, and choirs, creates a lively atmosphere on stage. The Ramayana is performed with facial expressions and gestures; without speaking a single line, the show is committed to classical music. to dance. The fight scene in this show is worth seeing as it contains many interactive and expressive gags.

Lakhon

It is the opposite, with no masks and no dramatic scene, unlike the Khon dance. Since only female dancers perform together, the dance tells the audience a story from Ramakhien (Thai Ramayana). There are different types of Lakhon, such as Lakhon Nok, Lakhon Nai, and Lakhon Phatang, each with a unique version of themselves. Like other Thai dances, each of the variations changed depending on the era to which they belonged.

The last was in Lakhon Phatang, incorporating Chinese martial arts and traditional costumes, depicting discussions between Chinese and Burmese in the 15th century.

Lakhon Lek 

Instead of people performing, puppets sing and dance here. Although this dance form is a rarity, it was once quite famous. People usually accompany the two-foot-tall instruments to perform on stage. , Creating a Stage Puppet Theater.

Fawn Thai Dance

Another type of folk dance in Thailand performed during festivals is the fawn dance. Easily choreographed and known as “Fawn Leb” for its fingernail pattern dance, it is well known to many tourists for its frequency. Further divided into five types, here the dancers wear elaborate clothing that follows the heritage of the royal courts of Siam. Leb, Tian, ​​​​​​Marn Gumm Ber, Marn Mong Kol, and New are the five variations, with no story behind any dance numbers. Candle Dance or Fawn Tian is a dance of the Thai Khun tribe in which eight dancers with candles in their hands perform the act.

The dance, often held at night and one of the most admired of the fawn category, is performed by couples wearing sarongs and jackets. Here the dancer worships Buddha and prays to protect the earth in every way.

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