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Daily Helping for March 24th, 2021 – Cheraw Dance

A photo still from a performance of the Cheraw dance, showing the female dancers standing in a line and the male performers holding the bamboo poles on the ground.

I have been making a concerted effort to seek out art and artists from different countries around the world as part of this challenge. I want to use the Daily Hart as an opportunity to learn as much as I can about other countries’ history, culture, customs, and traditions. Which was why I was absolutely delighted when the Cheraw dance came across my dashboard. This is the perfect example of something that I would have never found unless I actively went looking for it. And thanks to the Daily Hart, I have the perfect excuse to do exactly that every day. And I love it.

The Cheraw dance is a form of folk dancing from the Mizoram region of India. According to Google, there are some who believe that this dance originated in the 1st century AD. The first century! That means that this is a tradition that has been passed along for 2,000 years. As someone who grew up in a country that is only in its second century, the idea of anything surviving 2,000 years is simply extraordinary. This dance also happens to be unlike anything I’ve ever seen. I’ve watched this video at least a dozen times now, and I love it more every time. There’s something completely mesmerizing about both the simplicity and complexity of it, and I love the contrast of it all.

So far, I’ve featured artists from over 40 different countries, and I want to double that number by the time the year is up. So if there’s a tradition or type of artwork you think I should check out, please let me know. I can’t wait to discover more works of art like the Cheraw dance. Or even better, seeing this dance in person once travel is possible again.

Suggestions for artists I should check out? Please contact me with your ideas. I hope you enjoyed your daily helping of art!