Dancing is one of the major forms of art practiced well in Cambodia. There are three different classification of dance in Cambodia. Classical dance is the main of the three different dancing styles and the other two Cambodian dances are folk dance and vernacular dance. Classical dance has been practiced only in the courts of the royals. Cambodian people’s day to day life is portrayed in the folk dance and finally vernacular dance are done at any social gatherings or functions. Let us have a brief look into each dancing styles.
Cambodian classical dance: Classical dance of Khmer or Khmer royal ballet dance or court dance of Khmer is the general form of Cambodian classical dance performed only in the royal courts in order to express royalty. In their Khmer language this dance is called as the “Dances of Royal Wealth”. Thai classical dance and Khmer classical dance have a number of common parts or elements. Some classical dances are Apsara Dance, Tep Monorom, Robam Thvay Preah Por, Robam Moni Mekhala, Robam Makar, Robam Sovann Maccha, etc.
Folk dance in Cambodia: Folk dance in Cambodia is generally performed in front of audience for their entertainment. These folk dances are performed to portray the common and day to day life activities of Cambodian people. The dancers dress them up like farmers, tribal people, Chams, peasants, etc. while performing folk dance. Some names of folk dances are Trot Dance, Sneak Toseay Dance, Baboo Pole Dance, Pailin Peacock Dance, Yike Dance, Chhayam dance, etc.
Vernacular dance of Cambodia: During any social gatherings and social functions vernacular dance will be performed in Cambodia. Vernacular dances include Ram Vong, Ram Kbach, Ram Saravan, Iam Leav, etc. Traditional dance of Laos have more influence on these vernacular dances of Cambodia.