Celebrating World Folklore Day At Janapada Loka Ramanagara

World Folklore Day At Janapada Loka

World Folklore Day was celebrated with great enthusiasm at Janapada Loka Ramanagara with colourful folk dance performances and more.

World Folklore Day Celebration At Janapada Loka Ramanagara

The colourful costumes, the mesmerizing music, and the scintillating dance steps transported us to a different world at the Janapada Loka, Ramanagara, on the occasion of World Folklore Day. It was an event organized by the Ministry of Tourism, Government of India, Bengaluru, and Karnataka Janapada Parishath. The event showcased the rich heritage of Karnataka’s folk arts and was an opportunity for us and many others to get an immersive experience of a world that once existed, the world of Janapada Loka, that connects you with your roots and bridges the chasm of time, opening a window to the past.

World Folklore Day – Celebrating Folk Heritage

World Folklore Day Celebration At Janapada Loka Ramanagara

Ever since the cognitive development of Man came about, he has endeavoured to rise above the basic needs of food and shelter. This slowly evolved into expressions of art, music, dance, and much more. These expressions evolved even before the invention of writing, and hence a wealth of knowledge, customs, traditions, stories, and beliefs were passed on from generation to generation orally.

Many of these found their way into the mainstream and are part of living culture and lifestyles. However many of these were relegated to small communities, usually tribal communities, and even today remain as a part of folk culture or folklore. The esoteric nature of our folk culture and heritage means that many folk arts are on the verge of extinction, and efforts are needed to keep them alive. World Folklore Day celebrates folk culture across the globe and raises awareness about this glorious chapter in the history of mankind.

World Folklore Day History

William John Thoms
William John Thoms

It is imperative to know about World Folklore Day, its importance and its genesis before we talk about our experience at the World Folklore Day celebrations held at Janapada Loka. It is interesting to note that the word, “Folklore,” made its way into the English lexicon through a letter written to the British literary magazine, “Athenaeum,” published in London. The letter was from a British writer named William John Thoms and in this letter, he mentioned the word, “Folklore.” He is credited with coining the term. Prior to this words like, “popular antiquities,” and, “popular literature,” were used.

The day on which the term, “Folklore,” was used for the first time by William Thoms, was 22, August 1846. Since then August, 22, is celebrated worldwide as, ‘World Folklore Day.”

What is folklore? Folklore is made up of stories, customs, traditions, arts, and crafts, songs, music, etc., that have been passed from generation to generation orally.

World Folklore Day Celebrations At Janapada Loka Ramanagara

With a Somana Kunitha Artiste

We were privileged to be a part of the World Folklore Day celebrations at the Janapada Loka. The event was organized by Karnataka Janapada Parishath along with the Ministry of Tourism, Government of India, Bengaluru. A wonderful initiative to nurture the rich legacy of folk art and culture that the state of Karnataka is privileged to call its own.

Pata Kunitha

Folk music and dance form the soul of Karnataka’s art and culture. The state of Karnataka is one with a great depth and range of folk music and dance. The atmosphere was pregnant with anticipation as young and old waited for the event to begin, and it did in spectacular fashion.

Tamate and Nagari performance at Janapada Loka Ramanagara
Tamate and Nagari performance at Janapada Loka Ramanagara

Folk artists showcased various dance forms of Karnataka, to the accompaniment of heart-throbbing music from traditional musical instruments.

Hare vadya

Performances began right outside the main gate of Janapada Loka to build up the atmosphere for the arrival of the Chief Guest, and other dignitaries.

Colourful costumes, mesmerizing masks, vibrant headgear, smiling faces, and hypnotic music created a compelling symphony that was a perfect ode to Indian folklore.

The delightful medley of folk dances that thrilled the spectators included dances from different parts of Karnataka.

Somana Kunitha

Somana Kunitha at Janapada Loka Ramanagara
Somana Kunitha at Janapada Loka Ramanagara

Somana Kunitha is a dance form that awes onlookers with its sheer majesty. It is a ritual dance that is performed as part of the worship of village deities. The dance form has been handed over from generation to generation and is performed during festivals across Southern Karnataka regions including Mysore, Mandya, Hassan, and Tumakuru. The colourful and giant masks worn by the dancers give a terrifying appearance to the dancers and make it truly extraordinary.

Kamsale Kunitha

Kamsale
Kamsale

Kamsale Kunitha is a dance form practised by the devotees of Lord Mahadeshwara, a Sidda saint who lived in the 15th century and is believed to have been an incarnation of Lord Shiva. The devotees are usually from the Kuruba community. Kamsale Kunitha involves both song and dance using the musical instrument known as Kamsale. The songs are devotional songs of Lord Mahadeshwara that have been handed down from generations in the oral tradition. The Kamsale Kunitha is performed only by those who have taken a vow to lead a life of devotion to Lord Mahadeshwara.

Huli Vesha or Tiger Dance

Huli Vesha
Huli Vesha

Huli Vesha is a fascinating dance that features dancers dressed up in tiger costumes. This is a traditional dance from coastal Karnataka and is a part of many festivities including the famous Mangalore Dassara.

Pooja Kunitha

Pooja Kunitha
Pooja Kunitha

Pooja Kunitha is a ritualistic dance performed as part of Shakti worship, the dancer carries the idol in a decorated wooden enclosure and balances it on his head.

Pata Kunitha

Pata Kunitha
Pata Kunitha

Pata Kunitha is a dance in which the dancers hold a colourfully decorated bamboo pole measuring 10 to 15 feet in height. The dancers execute vigorous and energetic moves to the beat of drums in a highly charged dance. It is essentially a dance of devotion and done with great fervour.

Suggi Kunitha

Halakki Suggi Kunitha
Halakki Suggi Kunitha

Suggi Kunitha is a dance that is performed as part of the harvest celebrations in Karnataka. It is more specific to the Halakki community and hence is also referred to as Halakki Suggi Kunitha. A distinctive feature of the dance is the headgear worn by the dancers. The vibrant and colourful headgear symbolizes the colours of nature.

World Folklore Day Celebrations At Janapada Loka Amphitheatre

World Folklore Day Celebrations at Janapada Loka
World Folklore Day Celebrations at Janapada Loka

After the spectacular cultural extravaganza at the gates of Janapada Loka, it was time to head to the beautiful amphitheatre inside Janapada Loka. A gaily decorated stage was the centre of attraction, and the esteemed dignitaries invited for the occasion were seated there. Among the distinguished guests were Dr Ramalinga Reddy, Karnataka’s Transport Minister, Sri Sri Annadaneshwaranatha Swamiji, and Shri Mohamed Farouk, Director, Ministry of Tourism Government of India Bengaluru office.

Release of information booklet by Shri Mohamed Farouk, Director, Ministry of Tourism Government of India Bengaluru office
Release of information booklet by Shri Mohamed Farouk, Director, Ministry of Tourism Govt of India Bengaluru office

An information booklet containing comprehensive information about Janapada Loka, its genesis, and activities, was unveiled on the occasion by Shri Mohamed Farouk, Director, Ministry of Tourism Government of India Bengaluru office. The dignitaries took the opportunity to highlight the importance of folklore, and more specifically the immense wealth of Kannada folk art and culture.

Mukha Veena performance by Anjanappa at Janapada Loka Ramanagara
Mukha Veena performance by Anjanappa at Janapada Loka Ramanagara

What was one of the highlights of the event was the performance by Mukha Veene Anjanappa, a legendary folk musician. He performed on the rarest of rare musical instruments, known as Mukha Veene. It is an instrument played by blowing with the mouth and nostrils.

Students at Janapada Loka Ramanagara
Students at Janapada Loka Ramanagara

Shri Anjanappa had the audience in raptures as his lips played music that seemed to transcend divinity. Everyone in the audience, including the large number of school children watched with bated breath, hypnotized by the sheer magic of the sweet music that emanated from the Mukha Veene. They would have gone home, their minds resonating with the notes of the Mukha Veene and hearts swelling with pride at the legacy of folk culture that they were inheriting.

The World Of Janapada Loka | Kannada Janapada

Folklore Day

There could have been no better setting for the World Folklore Day celebrations, than the Janapada Loka. It is a place that tells a thousand Indian folklore stories from Karnataka. It is the fruition of the dreams, passion, and dedication of one man, Shri H.L. Nagegowda. The Karnataka Janapada Parishath was set up by him and it was he who conceived and built the Janapada Loka, brick by brick. He was a celebrated Kannada Folklorist who had a passion for preserving and propagating Karnataka folk traditions and culture.

If you want to connect with the folk culture of Karnataka, there is no better place, than the Janapada Loka. It is more than just a folklore museum, it simulates a slice of rural life from different parts of the state and provides an immersive experience to visitors. The sprawling and lush green campus of Janapada Loka consists of indoor museums including, ‘Lokamatha Mandira,”, “Chitra Kuteera,” and, “Lokamahal“.

Tribal Village at Janapada Loka Ramanagara
Tribal Village at Janapada Loka Ramanagara

There are indoor auditoriums and an amphitheatre. The sprawling grounds come alive with lifelike sculptures that depict various folk dances of Karnataka and vignettes from traditional rural life.

Tribal Village at Janapada Loka Ramanagara
Tribal Village at Janapada Loka Ramanagara

The Tribal Village simulates the look and feel of the villages and homes of different tribes of Karnataka and makes for a very enriching and enlightening experience for visitors.

Read our detailed guide to visiting Janapada Loka
Incredible Janapada Loka – A Folk Art Museum Near Bangalore

Janapada Loka Video

Get an immersive experience of Janapada Loka, watch our video here.

Janapada Youtube Video

Images Of World Folklore Day Celebrations At Janapada Loka Ramanagara

Images Of World Folklore Day Celebrations At Janapada Loka Ramanagara
Images Of World Folklore Day Celebrations At Janapada Loka Ramanagara

We leave you with these vibrant images from the World Folklore Day celebrations at Janapada Loka in Ramanagara, Karnataka.

With Shri Mohamed Farouk, Director, Ministry of Tourism Government of India Bengaluru
With Shri Mohamed Farouk, Director, Ministry of Tourism Govt of India Bengaluru

The time spent at Janapada Loka on the occasion of World Folklore Day was something that has left an indelible imprint on our hearts and minds. It has stoked the embers of the deep connection that we have with nature and our glorious past in the form of the rich folk heritage that is our lasting legacy.

Do visit the Janapada Loka to learn more about Karnataka’s folk culture. This is the least you can do to keep the disappearing culture alive.

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Our visit to Janapada Loka in Ramanagara was part of a familiarization trip organized by India Tourism Bangalore – Ministry of Tourism, Government of India to celebrate World Folklore Day. The views and opinions expressed in this blog post are our own. #WorldFolkloreDay #janapada #janapadaloka #karnatakatourism #Ramanagara #karnataka #ruraltourism

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World Folklore Day At Janapada Loka, Ramanagara

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Celebrating World Folklore Day At Janapada Loka Ramanagara

Celebrating World Folklore Day At Janapada Loka Ramanagara

8 thoughts on “Celebrating World Folklore Day At Janapada Loka Ramanagara”

  1. Wow, what an incredible experience celebrating World Folklore Day at Janapada Loka in Ramanagara! The vivid descriptions of the colorful costumes, mesmerizing music, and scintillating dance steps truly transported me to that enchanting world. It’s amazing to see the efforts by the Ministry of Tourism, Government of India, Bengaluru, and Karnataka Janapada Parishath to showcase Karnataka’s rich folk heritage. Preserving these traditions is vital to connect with our roots and bridge the gap between generations. The event truly highlights the significance of World Folklore Day in celebrating the diverse and fascinating cultures that have been passed down through generations.

    1. I frequently used to stop at this place during my Mysore Trips. Lipsmaking food at Kamat (next to it) and a pleasant stay plus exploring all the artifacts and taking to the olden days of arts and art forms. ಗ್ರಾಮೀಣ ಸಂಸ್ಕೃತಿ is being showcased well there plus events like this will be a good medium to make our younger generations to know and help in igniting the thoughts to learn and proficient in those countless artforms specially originated from ಕರ್ನಾಟಕ

  2. Unfortunately, I haven’t traveled to South of India much. But after reading your post, I am so inspired to travel to this place now. You have so well-described the it. Much appreciated!

  3. The rich heritage of Karnataka’s folk arts, is truly mesmerizing. Every art form has its own unique style and energy that draws in the audience with an unforgettable experience of culture, music and stories. I am particularly interested in exploring the intricacies of these folk arts, their history and cultural relevance.

  4. Wow I had no idea we had a world folklore day
    The stories and cultures are so vivid I would definitely wanna travel to these places
    Thank you for sharing this

  5. Your vivid description makes me really want to experience World Folklore Day at Janapada Loka, Ramanagara. It sounds like an incredible celebration of our cultural heritage.

  6. I haven’t traveled to the southern part of India yet. But now that I’ve read your story, I’m incredibly motivated to visit this location. You have shared the blog post. I’m learning from this .

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