Bamiyan Panorama

Bamiyan Panorama

Friday, July 01, 2011

Attan - the national dance of Afghanistan

(this one is from 1978, probably for Afghan TV)

Attan is a traditional Afghan dance. Done by both men and female.  It is said to be one of oldest Afghan Pagan dance, some identify Attan as an a religious ceremony of early Zoroastrians placing it 2000 BCE, and some have placed even older going back to King Yama's celebration of Nowroz and warriors dancing and circling around the fire. King Yama was the first Afghan king dating back to 3500 BCE. This was later modified into an Islamic dance to allow the dancers to get 'closer to God' this virtual Attan practised by many Afghan poets and mystics had even reached to corners of Turkey, Europe known as the Rumi Dance. It is performed usually with a Dhol, which is a double-headed barrel drum. The dance can be anywhere from 5 minute to 30 minutes long. There are many different kinds of Attan most famous are Kabuli, Paktiyaya (Done by Pakthiwals is more complex), Mazari, Kandahari, Sistani, Herati, Pashayi, and Nuristani.


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