Dandiya Raas During Navratri
Among the several forms of Raas, the most popular one is "Dandiya Raas", which is performed during Navratri. In fact, it holds a significant place in Navratri celebrations. It is known for setting the festive mood. Dandiya Raas is the featured and most popular dance of Navratri evenings in Gujarat. The dance form is not just restricted to Gujarat. It is performed in many other states, during the festive season of Navratri. Dandiya Raas is performed in the honor of Goddess Durga. It is the dramatization of a mock fight between the Goddess and Mahishasura - the mighty demon-king. The sticks of the dance represent the sword of Durga. Women normally perform it in a graceful and rhythmic manner in a circle as they rotate around the 'mandvi'..
Traditionally, Dandiya Raas is performed after aarti (ritual of worshipping the diety). Hence, Dandiya Rass is an important part of the merriment. The special characteristic of the dance is the colorful costume worn by the dancers and the colorful sticks carried by them. Both men and women love to be seen dressed in their best traditional attire. The women wear traditional dresses such as colorful embroidered choli, ghagra and bandhani dupattas glittering with mirror work and heavy jewellery, while men look very attractive in their traditional colorful kedias. The dresses for the dance were sewed by tailors until pre-made outfits started appearing in stores, especially for Dandiya Raas.
There are many options on what to wear for a Dandiya dance.