Sunday, December 4, 2022


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Manddo is a song or rather a poignant story of love told in the form of a lovely song. The word Manddo, derives from the Sanskrit 'mandalam' meaning circular movement. It is believed that originally the Konkani Manddo dance involved movement in circle. At present such circular patterns are noticed when the dancers get into a feverish pitch in the concluding stages of the dance. In the normal course the dance moves along parallel lines, with graceful movements to and fro, advancing and reading, the men displaying in a flourish towards the women their colourful handkerchiefs and the women admiring their toy fans, with an eye on the men. 

The Manddo music appears to have been strongly influenced by Latin or rather Italian music. The dance-song Manddo may be called a synthesis of the Italian minuet and the temple Devadasi dance-song.

The singing moves majestically in a slow, andante rhythm, with dignity and grace. It falls into a drowsy dormant mood towards the fag-end of the singing function when the singers are tired and may have imbibed considerable quantities of alcohol and cannot go on much longer. The Manddo has attained the virtual status of a classical or art song after being subjected to a process of sophistication and stylisation. The ghumott provided the right beat, attuned as it is to Manddo singing and dance. The beat of it moves faster and faster as the singing progresses to a crescendo, on to a frenzy and conclusion. 

Though the Manddo is a story of love told in song, there have been a few songs composed on a similar pattern but involving themes of a political nature called Political Manddo. There are Manddos on the revolts and uprisings of the Ranes, the legendary Warriors of the Sattari taluka of Goa, and the Christian Kustoba's feats of daring against the Portuguese government etc. 

Every year a Manddo festival is held as an event of importance from 1966 onwards, with a special Bernardo Award for the best Manddo.