Nandini’s the 9th Count Dance Academy is the only dance school in India which teaches Tamil Nadu s most celebrated forms of village folk dances. The folk dances include Karagattam, Kummi, Mayil Attaam and Kavadi attami. The training curriculum includes the above folk dances and the dancers have attained fame and name on many stages.
Karagam is a folk dance with musical accompaniment, performed balancing decorated pots on the head. It is known as ‘Aatta Karagam’ and symbolises joy and merriment. This is one of the more popular rural dances today. Earlier it was performed only with accompaniment of the Naiyandi Melam but now it includes songs also.
Kummi is one of the most important and ancient forms of village dances of Tamilnadu. It originated when there were no musical instruments, with the participants clapping their hands to keep time. This is performed by women. The women stand in a circle and dance clapping their hands rhythmically for the songs. This dance is usually performed during temple festivals, Pongal, the harvest festival, and family functions.
This is done by girls dressed as peacocks, resplendent with peacock feathers and a glittering head-dress complete with a beak. They dance like peacocks.
The ancient Tamils when they went on pilgrimage, carried the offerings to the gods tied on the either end of the long stick, which was balanced on the shoulders. In order to lessen the boredom of the long travel they used to sing and dance about the gods. Kavadi Aattam has its origin in this practice. Special songs were created to be sung while carrying the Kavadi Sindhu. This is mainly a religious dance, performed in worship of Lord Murugan, the second son of Siva.