The Gair is a popular folk dance of the Bhil tribes in Rajasthan, the North Western Indian state popular for its royalty. The Bhil tribes of Rajasthan have a rich heritage and have been referred to in the Hindu legends of Mahabharata, the martial and scouting abilities of the warriors of this tribe have been coveted by many kings along with the colonial British and modern Indian armies.

The Gair dance is performed by the men and women of the community together. The dance is traditionally performed as a part of the celebrations of the Holi festival of the Hindus that signifies the arrival of the spring season. The men are dressed in special skirt like long attire and they also hold small sticks that they clap with the other dancers, both men and women. It is a dance that displays both the vigor of masculinity in men and the feminist grace of women. The brilliant play of colors that is displayed during the fast paced movements is the major attraction of the Gair dance.

Dance Form

There are many variation of the Gair dance, depending on the region and they also have a different name. The dance involves circular formations of men and women dancing in intricate steps and movements. There are basically two concentric circular formations of both men and women and the male dancers spin in alternate directions while moving around the circle. These movements slowly unfurl the pleats of their skirts that are initially bound. The dance is very energetic and has a complex movement pattern that requires good coordination between the dancers. The Gair is accompanied by high tempo music and high pitched singing from men and women.

Musical Instruments

The musical instruments used with Gair performances are indigenous to Rajasthan and the Bhil communities.

Dhol: It is a popular and wide spread North Indian folk drum.

Sarangi: It is a stringed instrument that is well developed that is bowed like a violin.


The Importance of the Gair dance is evident from the fact that it is the central event during the celebrations of the Holi festival. This festival has immense significance in the Hindu way of life all over India.


There are basically two forms of the Gair dance:

Jodhpur Gair: It has a martial element in it and is performed only by men, holding swords and arranged in a single file

Dandia Gair: It is a form of Gair that is more close to the Gujrati culture and starkly resembles the Gujrati folk dance of Raas Dandiya.

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