Different Types of South African Dances
African dances has traditionally played an important role in the culture from the tribes.
South Africans are known for having rhythm in their blood, and it is this innate quality that makes them so expressive. Far from being merely entertaining, South African dance is about communicating emotions and celebrating community life. It is a means of imbibing social values and patterns, it is in every sense the mirror reflection of the life in the community. This is South African dance in particular and it is nothing short of being a celebration of life itself. Here, music and rhythm is not just skin deep but it flows through the veins and is passed down from generation to generation.
South African dance is which sets it apart from all other dances. This implies that a dancer’s body is not considered to be one single unit but instead, is divided into several segmented areas which are able to respond to the different rhythms within the music.
Types Of African Dance
The warrior dance is a typical south African dance form that is a fusion of warfare movements and artistic movements of the body. This dance form consists of many aggressive movements like “stabbing” with drum beats.
Ritual dance represents the broadest and most ancient of South African dance. An example is the Mbira dance, the quintessential ritual dance of Zimbabwe. Ritual dance enforces and affirms the belief system of the society. As such, they are usually religious in nature and are designated for specific occasions that expedite and facilitate the most powerful expression of the South African people that is ancestral reverence.Ritual dances are initiated by the informed and the elders. Throughout Africa, dance is also an integral part of the marking of birth and death. At burial ceremonies the Owo Yoruba perform the igogo, in which young men dance over the grave and pack the earth with stomping movements.
The love dance is also known as the celebration dance. This type of dance is performed to celebrate different festivals and happy events like weddings, tribal rituals and anniversaries. Trained dancers perform this dance in front of other tribal members.
Indlamu dance is popularly known as African Zulu dance. The dance form is practiced by the Zulu tribes of South Africa dance. The dance is also known as Zulu war dance and is one of the main attractions of a Zulu wedding. In this dance form, the dancers lift their legs to the height of their head and bang them down hard against the ground.
Summoning And Possession Dance
Summoning and possession are the most common and popular forms of African folk dance. Most of the indigenous tribes perform this dance for “calling a spirit.” These “spirits” are worshiped by many tribes. Some tribes also perform this dance type during the time of war or a drought in the belief that this will bring them good fortune.
This is a popular dance form from Nigeria and the Western African regions. In this dance form, “The Beaded Gourd Rattle” called ‘Shekere’ in the native language, is thrown in the air to indicate the rhythm changes.