India has had a long romance with the art of dance. 
Nātyaśāstra (Science of Dance) and Abhinaya Darpana (Mirror of Gesture) are two surviving Sanskrit documents, both estimated to be between 1700 to 2200 years old.
The Indian art of dance as taught in these ancient books, according to Ragini Devi, is the expression of inner beauty and the divine in man. It is a deliberate art, nothing is left to chance, each gesture seeks to communicate the ideas, each facial expression the emotions.

Indian dance includes eight classical dance forms, many in narrative forms with mythological elements. The eight classical forms accorded classical dance status by India's National Academy of Music, Dance, and Drama are: bharatanatyam of the state of Tamil Nadukathak of Uttar Pradeshkathakali and mohiniattam of Keralakuchipudi of Andhra Pradeshyakshagana of Karnatakamanipuri of Manipurodissi (orissi) of the state of Odisha and the sattriya of Assam.
In addition to the formal arts of dance, Indian regions have a strong free form, folksy dance tradition. Some of the folk dances include the bhangra of Punjab; the bihu of Assam; the zeliang of Nagaland; the chhau of Jharkhand; the qauwwalis, birhas and charkulas of Uttar Pradesh; the jat-jatin and saturi of Bihar; the ghoomar of Rajasthan; the dandiya and garba of Gujarat; the kolattam of Andhra Pradesh; the yakshagana of Karnataka ; lavani of Maharashtra;Dekhnni of Goa;Karakattam, Oyilattam, and mayilattam of Tamil Nadu.
Recent developments include adoption of international dance forms particularly in the urban centres of India, and the extension of Indian classical dance arts by the Kerala Christian community, to tell stories from the Bible.

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