Monday, February 8, 2010

Papua New Guinea - Traditional Dances 2009

Issued on 23 November 2009

Stamp Sets:
Kina 1.00 - Engagement Dances, Western Highlands Province
Kina 3.00 - Bride Pride Dances, Central Provinces
Kina 4.65 - Engagement Dances, Manus Provinces
Kina 6.30 - Trobriand Dances, Milne Bay Provinces

Kina 1.00 - Courtship Dances, Chimbu Province
Kina 3.00 - Engagement, Enga Provinces
Kina 4.65 - Engagement Dances, Central Provinces
Kina 6.30 - Womanhood, Central Provinces

Souvenir Sheet:
Kina 10.00 - Trobriand Love Dances, Milne Bay Province

Traditional Dances of Papua New Guinea

As regarded by every tribe, Sing Sing (dancing) time is a time of joy when both dancers and spectators alike come to relax and regenerate mentally from all devastating forces of life. Dancing is not a frequent occurrence. They are seldom held to purposely compensate tribesmen for their loyalty to the Chiefs or head-man after laborious periods of gardening, tribal conflicts or other tribal engagements.

Dancing is all gesture representations. To depict a certain subject in a dance performance, the dancers, as much as possible, completely forget their nature and come to an imaginary state of mind (similar to that of the subject replicated) where they freely express the common gestures of the subject at focus.

During these performance, the thoughts and feelings of the dancer combine to compose motions executed, thus, sending waves of thrill to the spectators. The spectators in-turn express emotions of glee to as much as how they perceive it. Different topics create different thrill waves. Most are very emotional.

Traditional dances are categorized by gestures of subjects and events replicated in the performances. One such category is romance. Romantic dances, just like any other dance, are composed to commemorate an occurrence within the tribe or that of a chieftain or Sherman.

Some dance occasions take place after tribal fights where two or more tribes are involved. These gatherings are seen as avenues of reconciliation. As a norm of life, it’s business as usual for all parties after these gatherings.

The amazing thing is the ability for the tribes to reconcile especially after fierce fighting. Hate surely is not the motivating factor as one can see, it’s the spur-of-the-moment anger for loss of possession or injustice seen that drives them. Therefore romantic dances performed during these occasions are seen as cushions to the process.

Of all the other Traditional dance categories to come, The Post PNG Philatelic Bureau has decided to feature Romantic Dances as its last postage stamp issue for 2009.


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