Chapchar Kut Festival
Among other festivals, Chapchar Kut or Spring Festival is the most well-liked festival, celebrated after completion of the most arduous job of jungle clearing for 'jhum' operations. On this day, people of all ages, young and old, men and women clothed in their respective
colourful costumes and head-gears, assemble and perform a range of folk dances, sing traditional songs, accompanied by the beating sound of drums, gongs and cymbals.
Mizos boast of a number of folk and community dances that have been handed down over the generations. It is in these dances that the visitor can get a sight of the tribal heritage of the Mizos. Most important of these dances are Cheraw (bamboo dance),
Khuallam, Solakia and Chheih Iam. These dances have evolved through community involvement and contribution.
On the second day, members of the extra clans in the village would kill their pigs for the village feast. On the third day, which was known as
Kut day, Zu would be taken in the houses in which someone had died during the year.
On this day before sunset in the evening people mainly mother and children dressed in their best would gather in the open space in the village at the
Lungdawh, which is a stone platform put up as a memorial to the dead, bringing with them rice, boiled eggs and meat. One would try to force the food down the throat of one's friends. This was known as
Chhawnghnawt. After sunset the young boys and girls would get together in the houses of well-to-do-villagers. They would spend the night in drinking, singing and dancing.
The next day was known as Zupui Ni which was the day of drinking a
particular type of liquor called
Zupui which was brewed from well husked rice. In the evening before sunset, young men and girls dressed in their best would collect in the open space of the village for singing and dancing.
They formed a circle in which the young men would have their arms across girls who would alternate between the boys. Within the circle would be the drummer or gong beater, who would chant while the young people would sing and move bit by bit keeping time with the song. This dance was known as
Chai dance. During the dance, the children of the village would go on serving the dancing boys and girls Zu of the best variety in bamboo cups.
The next day was called Zuthingni or the day of drinking a special type of
Zu. On this day there would be a general dance in the village. Zu drinking would go on. The dance would continue day and night until the
Zu supply would run short.
The last day of the festival was known as Ziapurni or the day of rest after eating and drinking. On this day people would unwind after excited days of festivals. They would not go out to the jungle which was supposed would bring bad luck.