The dance is believed to date back to over a century, though the specific date of
its origin cannot be definitely ascertained. The dance was patronised by the royalty
and landlords of the region. Since its inception, the members of the Mahato, Kurmi,
Bhumija, Deowa, Bhuama and Dom communities have sustained this dance form.
The accompanying musical instruments include the Dhol, Dhamsaand Shenai.
The dance commences with an invocation to Lord Ganesh. Then the movements
follow the nuances of the story. In a Chhau Dance the fight between good and evil
always culminates in the triumph of good over destructive evil. The elaborate masks,
the dazzling costumes, the rhythmic drum beatings and shenai, characterise the
Natua, an ancient dance form is performed during the Shiber Gajan (between March and May) and occasionally at weddings. The word Natua is derived from the name of Lord Nataraj. It is believed that Nandi and Vringi, the associates of Lord Shiva were the first to perform the Natua dance during Shiva Durga's marriage. The artists of this dance use bullock cart wheels and other daily life instruents and gears in their dance performance. This highly acrobatic dance form involves many tricks with fire and is usually accompanied by the beats of a Jai Dhak.
Jhumur is the premier folk music of Purulia . It is accompanied by lyrical ancient songs and dances. The songs of Jhumur always tells stories of socio-economic and geographical conditions of the place.Madal, a typical beating drum, and flute are played with Jhumur . Various forms of Jhumur are existing. Chaitali Jhumur is performed during march april. Bhaduria Jhumur is performed during August.
It is said that, Gambhir Singh Mura used to study the movements of Tiger and dance of peacock while preparing himself for the Chau dance.
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Nearest airport is Ranchi Airport. From there one can hire a car or take private bus to Purulia.
Purulia is well connected to other parts of India via its train line. Purulia is the central station. Other stations are Raghunathpur, Adra.
Purulia is well connected to Kolkata and Ranchi . Both states have private bus service for Purulia. Kolkata has Government bus service for Purulia too.