© 2023 Dr Margaret Sheppard

Home Whips Kings Processions Poson Dondra Kodawila Kataragama


There are many colourful and varied processions. Typically a village or interest, school class group will organise one and they often practise for months. These groups may well go around to process in the different Temple Peraheras.

The first procession is usually the Temple ladies.

Then follow groups of dancers performing traditional dances. They wear very elaborate costumes and make up. Many troupes even have their own bands

These two groups are performing a traditional dance based on the paddyfield - the winnowing dance.

The Peacock Dance: the dancers dance like peacocks - raising their “tails “ imitating a peacock in the courtship dance, they wear “peacock” head dresses. N.B. the dance trainer in white.

At the bigger Peraheras such as Dondra, the individual dance groups are separated by decorated elephants who “dance” in the processions. As it becomes dark the elephants who wear lights, shine in the dark

The “horse” dance