At a Glance :
Region : Orissa's coastal areas
Practiced In : Chaitra month, during month of March and April
Relevance : Connected to Shakti Cult
Restricted By : Kalibarta caste people
Chaiti ghoda dance of Orissa state is very much simple type of dance and it is very much common within the coastal Orissa's fishermen. The function of the Chaiti ghoda dance is organized in the entire month; it gets start by the full moon of Chaitra( Hindu month) as per the English calendar it starts from the month of March and April till the Baisakh, month of April and May. According to the ancient legends, Lord Rama has gifted a horse to that boatman, who helped Lord Rama to cross the Saraju River, while Lord Rama's Vanavas period. From that time, People are worshipping the horse. Chaiti ghoda dance is highly embedded within Shakti cult. The soul part of the dance drama is acted through the horse character; that why it is known as Ghoda dance.
The picture of the horse has been created by the cloth and bamboo, whole body, head and tail but it is without the legs. The dancing artist goes inside the hollow body's cockpit and drapes on the waistline, which gives delusion of horse rider. The complete performance projects such dazzling effect devoid of green room. This dance is held while the annual Festivals celebration, through this worship the Baseli. Baseli is a regional goddess that considered as horse headed. One more dance is necessary in the celebration of this festival that is dummy horse which invokes the goddess. Majority of the troupes are having around 6 members. Among those members, 2 people are percussionists play dhol, 3 actors; other members also play the different instruments such as mahuri, kettledrums and wind instrument. All these professional artists visit various rural area and villages to give the invitation of festival. In these Chaiti ghoda dance group some artists come from fishing community and the musicians of group are belongs to the Harijans. Normally only 2 artists are needed to perform the drama one character is Rutani( wife of Rautani ) & Rauta, Rauta is a prime interpreter and singer.
The character of Rauta's wife normally played through a ma and from some near by years women are playing the role. After chanting, all the artists start the play of Kaibarta gita, it is also known as a Fishermen's song. It is a holy text over the origin of the community. In these recent years, young artists are also showing the interest towards the historical mythological stories to display the broad range. During the episodes of play, the narrator adds funny moments like domestic topics offers entertainment to the audience. On few times, the couple emerges into the fights, which has been conceptualized in the manner of answers and questions. The Chaiti ghoda dance goes on till the mid night. The single performer of this dance is Kaibarta. This dance form has become famous because it's mythological and historical themes, which create an interest among the village people.