Singhi Chham Dance Sikkim
Singhi Chham Dance Sikkim

In Sikkim the interesting dance called Singhi Chham is performed. It has also religious associations. Mount Khang-chen-Dzong-pa (Kanchenjungha) the third largest mountain in the world is sacred to the people of Sikkim as their guardian deity. As decreed by Guru Rimpche (Guru Padmasambhava), this majestic mountain stands guard over the land, holding within its crevices the sacred Five Treasures. Its associate peaks look like the legendary Snow lion, fierce and fiery with its gorgeous mane hued in turquoise. The Snow Lion is considered an important cultural symbol of the state and is elaborately depicted in the Singhi Chham or the Snow Lion dance. Usually two or four dummy lions perform the dance. Each dummy Snow Lion is made of white fur and the face is bluish. Actually, it is total mask made of cloth and fur. Two dancers get into each lion mask and position themselves inside the mask in such a way that the Snow Lion looks somewhat like a real lion. The legs of the dancer positioned on the front become the two forelegs of the lion and the two legs of the dancer positioned at the back form the hind legs. With amazing synchronization the two dancers move so that the movement of the Snow Lion appears realistic. Only a drum is used with the dance.

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