Songi Mukhawate

There are quite a few recreational dances which have pronounced theatrical elements. Therefore, they are quite entertaining. One such dance is Songi Mukhawate of Maharashtra. Although it has religious associations and connected rituals, the theatrical elements come to the fore. It is customarily performed as an integral part of the worship of Devi (mother goddess) on the full moon night of the lunar month of Chaitra (March/April). The dance celebrates the victory of truth over falsehood. The name of the dance is derived from the two lion masks worn by two dancers who represent Narasimha, an aspect of Lord Vishnu. The dancers in the role of Kal Bhiarav and Vetal also wear masks. The other dancers perform holding sticks in their hands. Dhol, Pawari, and Sambal are the main musical instruments used in this dance. The Pawari players wear green costume and peacock feathers on their headgears.