In the terreiro (places of worship in Candomblé), a xirê (which means circle and pronounced ‘shee-RAY’) is a dance ceremony (usually open to the public) that is held to invoke the orixás as a part of Candomblé ritual. The initiated dance for the orixás and the orixás enter and dance through the bodies of the initiates through trance. When the orixá manifests through the initiate, the initiate is dressed elaborately in full regalia as the orixá. The orixá is returned to the public circle and continues to dance while others cheer, sing, and greet the orixá. The orixá may offer advice and healing to many people that are in attendance.
Each orixá has its own dance movements, greetings, songs, and drum rhythms, many of which are showcased in non-religious performances, and even Afro-Brazilian dance classes, and other folkloric events. In the video below, Balé folclórico da Bahia performs dances for Ogum, Oxum, Obaluayê, Iansã (Oya), Oxossi, and Oxalá (Obatala) respectively.
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