There are three principal dancing forms of Sri Lankan classical dance: They are The Kandyan dances of the Hill Country The low country dances of the southern plains and Sabaragamuwa dances.
Kandyan dance takes its name from Kandy, the last royal capital of Sri Lanka.This genre is today regarded as the national dance of Sri Lanka.The drum used in Kandyan dancing is known as the Geta Bera and The elaborate ves costume, particularly the headgear, is considered sacred and is believed to belong to the deity Kohomba.
Low-country dance is a highly ritualistic dance form performed to appease evil spirits which are believed to cause sicknesses . The dancers wear masks depicting many characters varied in forms of bird, demons, reptiles.There are 18 main dances related to pahatharata style known as the Daha Ata Sanniya held to exorcise 18 types of diseases from the human body.
The Sabaragamuwa dances are usually performed in Ratnapura, relating to the worshiping of God Saman much revered by local people. There are 32 main dances in Sabaragamuwa Style.The Sabaragamuwa dances are distinguishable because they are sacrosanct performances to invoke blessings from the gods, so that the goodness that comes forth from them will overcome evil.