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Dance and Music of Arunachal Pradesh

Dance and Music Arunachal Pradesh

Music and dance are inseparable from any occasion being celebrated in Arunachal Pradesh. Both men and women participate with equal enthusiasm in the music and dance in Arunachal Pradesh usually performed in groups.

The existing dance forms in Arunachal Pradesh are a significant aspect of the socio-cultural heritage of this tiny North-eastern state of India. The locals are fond of dancing and merry-making. They dance not only on festivals and rituals but also for recreation. Both men and women enjoy the different dancing forms.

The dance forms vary along with the variation in the tribe. The Mishmi priests indulge in igo dance, Adis, Wanchos and Noctes in war dance, Buddhists in ritualistic dances. All these dance forms are predominantly male dances where females are not allowed to participate.

The popular folk dances of Arunachal Pradesh include Aji Lamu, Roppi, Hurkani, Popir, Rekham Pada, Chalo, Ponung, Buiya, Lion dance, Pasi Kongki and Peacock dance. Most of dances are performed on the rhythm of the songs sung in chorus. Cymbals and drums are played in the background while the songs are sung.


The songs sung by the locals are alike fables. The folksongs bring forth the historic past of the tribes. These songs are mythological and related to the folk history. Listed below are some of the important folk songs that are sung on different events in Arunachal Pradesh:


This folk song is sung during marriages, other social events and occasions of merriment. It is either sung individually or in chorus by both men as well as women. Once the professionals start singing the songs, all the people present join them.


Baryi is a song that narrates mythology, history and religious lore of the people of Arunachal Pradesh. Whether it is a social event or a religious gathering, Baryi is an important feature. Baryi is a long song. Therefore, the complete cycle of the song takes hours to finish. The glories of the past narrated by the song arouses a nostalgic feeling amongst the people.

This song is sung during a marriage ceremony when the bridal side comes back leaving behind the bride in her new home. The song consists of several advices useful for the bride to manage her future life. Joy is the basic theme of this song.
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