Traditional music and dance of Manipur, Northeast India


Recent posts

Lai Ishei Shakpa of Chakpa Phayeng. Lullaby to the Lai.

Lai Ishei Shakpa of Chakpa Phayeng. Lullaby to the Lai.

The Lai Ishei Shakpa are the unique ritual songs sung at the Chakpa Phayeng Lai Haraoba. They could be said to be Lullaby that sends the Lai deities to sleep at the close of each evening program. The Ishei Shakpa are sung by the Arangbi […]

Laihui Children’s class with Mangka.

Laihui Children’s class with Mangka.

Children’s music class at Laihui. With Mangka Mayanglambam. Laihui is a center for the traditional performing arts in Imphal, Manipur. Founded in the 1980s by a collective of musicians and artists they are working to preserve and protect the music and dance of the region. Every […]

A lesson with the Maibi of Manipur. Ima Dhoni Amaibi.

A lesson with the Maibi of Manipur. Ima Dhoni Amaibi.

Ima Dhoni Amaibi is the current senior Amaibi at the JN Manipur Dance Academy. This set of short videos were taken at her home in Imphal as she gives lessons to other Maibi and a research student from the university. (Special thank you to Ima […]

Lai Haraoba, Leisem Jagoi (Dances of Devotion) Chakpa Phayeng

Lai Haraoba, Leisem Jagoi (Dances of Devotion) Chakpa Phayeng

Leisem Jagoi Chakpa Phayeng   Another Phayeng Leisem Jagoi by Iche Thabhallei  of Phayeng. She may be the only person who still can perform this special ancient dance. 1st dance 2nd dance  

Oja Dingbulung: Music of the Kabui (Rongmei) Naga tribe of Manipur

Oja Dingbulung: Music of the Kabui (Rongmei) Naga tribe of Manipur

  One of the elders of the Kabui Naga community is Oja Dingbulung. He lives with his family at Mahabali Kabui Khul, a tribal neighborhood near the palace grounds in Imphal. Oja has great knowledge of many rare and disappearing songs of his tribe the […]

Maibi’s, Kanglei Thokpa / Lai Nupi Thiba. Trance Dance of Lai Haroaba.

Maibi’s, Kanglei Thokpa / Lai Nupi Thiba. Trance Dance of Lai Haroaba.

Of the Amaibi’s ritual dances, perhaps the most beautiful and dramatic is the Kanglei Thokpa, known also as Lai Nupi Thiba, “the Lai searching for their bride”. It is a trance dance of the highest order, mystical, theatrical, and at times ominous. Traditionally the Lai […]

Puthem Chaobi sings folksongs from Chakpa Andro village, Manipur.

Puthem Chaobi sings folksongs from Chakpa Andro village, Manipur.

Puthem Chaobi is a folksinger of the Chakpa village of Andro, East Imphal,Manipur. She can recall many of the traditional folksongs of her village which no one else remembers or sings. We were able to record Iche Puthem Chaobi during December of 2013. The recording […]

Traditional and rare folksongs from Kakching, with Ima Chandani

Traditional and rare folksongs from Kakching, with Ima Chandani

Here are some rare folksongs performed by Ima Yehkhom Chandani Leima. Ima remembers some of the songs from her youth. Today many songs are being forgotten and it is only the elder folks of the villages who retain them. Perhaps Ima Chandani is the only […]

Pena Music: Oja Mangi, Yakeiba / Yakairol (Morning Invocations).

Pena Music: Oja Mangi, Yakeiba / Yakairol (Morning Invocations).

The master Pena Khongba (musician), Oja Kangembam Mangi plays the ritual morning invocations of Lai Haraoba known formally as Yakeiba and more popularly as Yakairol. One of the great values of these recording are their capture in their actual setting at the Manipur ritual festival of Lai Haraoba. These song of praise […]

Mangka sings Moirang Sai with Laihui Ensemble

Mangka sings Moirang Sai with Laihui Ensemble

Manipuri folk singer, Mangka Mayanglambam performs the traditional Meitei performance style known as Moirang Sai (Tales from Moirang Khamba Thoibi). Mangka performs the two most popular sections of the repertoire,  Kwakta Lamjel (The Tournament Race at Kwakta). The set is produced by Seven Sisters Music, with […]

The book: Dance Music and Ritual in Manipur

The book: Dance Music and Ritual in Manipur

  With over 300 photographs and comprehensive text, Dance Music and Ritual in Manipur is the first in depth English language book focusing on the indigenous folk performing arts  of Manipur in Northeast India.  Written and photographed by Byron Aihara, the project has received the support and […]

About Seven Sisters Music and Byron Aihara

About Seven Sisters Music and Byron Aihara

Byron Aihara is a filmmaker, photographer, and writer, who has centered his work for the past five years on traditional performance arts of Manipur, Northeast India. He has published a book titled, Dance Music and Ritual in Manipur. And is currently completing the final draft […]

Gallery – Fine Art Prints

Gallery – Fine Art Prints

Limited edition, signed, printed on fine art papers. $170.00. Contact: byron.aihara@gmail.com for details. 25% of proceeds go to (WAHPS) Wildlife And Habitat Protection Society, Punshilok. ~ ~ ~