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Odissi Classical and

Sacred Temple Dance of India


Odissi music like Odissi dance was neglected for a long time. Today, it radiates far beyond the frontiers of Odisha and, in India, occupies a place equal to those of other classical styles.

Because of Odisha's geographical situation, its music has been influenced by both north (Hindustani) and south (Karnatak) styles of music and vice versa.

Odissi is a very old classical style of music with specific raags, taals, and its own special style of rendering of lyrics and melody. In this way, the influences are most perceptible in the form rather than the essence of the music of Odisha which is, above all, an emanation of a regional culture and music.

Today, the Odissi musical orchestra consists of the pakhawaj player (two headed drum), one or two male or female vocalists, sitar player (stringed instrument), violinist, flute player, and possibly a manjira player (small cymbals).

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