Kudubi ‘Hooli’ (Tribal) Dance



‘Kudubi’s are tribal group and speak mixed Marathi dialect in the Northern Coastal Karnataka. Being the tribal group the men folk  perform the  ‘Holy Dance and songs’ during the ‘holy’ festival. The men folk  decorate themselves  with a turban and wild flowers ‘abbalige’ and hold ‘gummate’ a percussion instrument made of clay. Beating the drum the men folk dance in circle and footsteps of the dance moves in semi circular shape. Only  on the day of ‘Holy’ festival  such performance takes place at countryside. The men folk or the ‘Hooly’ dancers go in group and dance  on front of the land lord and receives reward either cash or in kind. The collected money and  grains are used  for the grand festival of the ‘Holy’ day. The similar kind of ‘Hooly’ is also popular in the Marathi Naik’s ethnic group of Udupi Taluk. They also use the  percussion instrument  is called ‘gummate’.

It is believed that these people who are migrated once upon a time from the Goa towards South Canara and settled permanently. It is said that at Goa the Maratha people and Hindus are objectively forced to accept the Christianity, to avoid the religious conversion the ‘Maratha’, ‘Kudubi’ and ‘Konkani’ people migrated and settled in this region.

‘Hooly’ which takes place in the month of March is an important festival observed by the Maratha’s and Kudubis. The kith and kin join  together  before the chief’s house or  before the temple.

The festival associated with certain rites like worshiping a coconut in front of the “Tulasi” shrine. After the rites of the initial  day they set out on a dance tour in the neighboring villages. Returns  on the last day and get together on front of the community chief’s house or on front of the temple and dance with merry, finally offer the worship to ‘Tulasi’ shrine, and share the food. The songs sung in Marathi language, few are in Kannada language, along this the dancing troupe  sings the Kolaata” (stick dance)  songs which are very melodic and the dance resembles of the Goa Konkans “Dandia” (stick dance) dance form.