The Dappaankuthu [டப்பாங்கூத்து] Documentation.

At work, my pc speaker plays music, Mostly Tamil film songs. Some of colleagues step in and comment about music, most tell me that they are really fast, groovy and colorful. When someone stepped in yesterday, he heard “Dimsu katai” followed by M.Rasa. M.Rasa. He also made similar comments on both the songs.

With a big simile and the usual “Varatu Desi Tamilian pride” I started to boast about the dance sequence in Tamil movies, giving emphasis on M.R.M.R, he wanted to know more about the type of dance and music this song adopts. I boasted right royally that this dance was called as “Dappaankuthu” and had its roots from the great city of Chennai. I told them, I have witnessed this form of dance in movies, live in Usman Road T.Nagar, “D” stand of MAC stadium and every other corner of Chennai.

However these are my words, hey! has anyone documented this form of dance anywhere?, I need to find it, I set on a quest to find about Dappaankuthu documentation.

My quest was to find a written grammar and guideless for this art. For next 15 minutes, I goggled, Yahooed, Msn’ed, finally, Internet rocks Yes, I did find meaningful documentation about this dance, where in the “Wikipeida” and here is the abstract from Wikipeida.

Dappaankuthu (டப்பாங்கூத்து in Tamil) is a type of dance performed on the streets of Chennai, India. It is usually performed in economically backward areas, and is commonly used to relieve emotional tension. It is therefore equally likely in both wedding processions and funeral processions.

1. Take one step with your foot.
2. If you just brought your left foot forward, point your left fist to the sky and your right fist directly ahead, otherwise do the opposite.
3. If you bring your left fist skyward, look straight ahead or slightly upwards, otherwise look down at your feet.
4. The above three steps must be done simultaneously.
5. Bob your torso up and down once.
6. Repeat with the other foot.
7. Maintain a pace of one step every second, with a bob equidistant between every two steps.
8. Pelvic thrusts between steps can also be introduced to provide some variation

Please note that it is considered important to dance the way one feels during the performance, so dapaankuthu is not necessarily restricted to the above steps, though they form the major elements of this traditional art form.

Although any attire can be worn when you dance dappaankuthu, a lungi (colourful cloth wrapped around the waist; commonly worn) is most preferable -- ideally folded in the middle with the knot almost at your chest level which makes occasional glimpse of under pant or loin cloth possible.

It is considered polite to mark time by clapping and whistling loudly when someone else is dancing the dappaankuthu. Some spectators may also set off firecrackers near the dancer's feet if they themselves need to de-stress emotionally.

The actual link