• Dang Culture

Thali Vaadan: The Melodies of Bronze Plates

Thali Vaadan is the Dangi tradition of storytelling, where performers narrate stories to the backdrop of music produced using bronze plates (thali).

The musical instrument is made by gluing a dry, hollow stick to the center of the plate using honeycomb wax. The musician sits on the floor with his legs crossed and places the Thali on his lap, creating hollow space underneath the Thali. He then strokes the stick using his thumb and index finger from the top to bottom, producing a melodic bass sound. As the song progresses, the stick and beeswax are shifted in the Thali to change notes and match the singer's voice.

Thali Vaadan is used to narrate tales from Ramayan and Mahabharat, and the ritual often continues for long hours, and at times, till early morning.

Details of Thali Vaadan are taken from Dr. Utpala Desai's thesis, "Tradition and change in performing art forms of Dangi tribal: a critical study".

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