The palm fan dance: An ancient ritual dance for Hani people

The palm fan dance is an ancient ritual dance for Hani people living in Yangjie and Nanuo villages in Yuanjiang County, southwest China's Yunnan Province. In the past, people danced to mourn the dead. Now, the palm fan dance is seen in more festive occasions.

Every motion in the dance either imitates animals or labor activities. Dancers use palm fronds to mimic the wings of a silver pheasant, a sacred bird that is said to save the ancestors of Hani people in legends. The palm fan dance shows Hani people's respect for nature.

About the "Go! Yunnan" series:

Yunnan Province in southwest China boasts spectacular natural landscapes, biodiversity and diverse ethnic groups. Among China's 56 recognized ethnic groups, 25 are in Yunnan. This livestream series will take you on tour to six cities or autonomous prefectures in Yunnan to see the little-known food, scenery and folk customs. Stay tuned for our upcoming livestreams! 

See more about Yuanjiang County:

The Hamo Brothers: Recreating ancient Hani melody

Terraced fields sculpted by Hani people in SW China

Yuanjiang County: A tropical fruit kingdom

The cradle of wild aloe vera in China

How China's Hani people use plants to dye cloth

(Cover image taken by Zhang Chao. Video filmed by Liu Yang and Liu Ming, edited by Zhao Yirui.)

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