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Country Sudan Genres roots traditional Festival Sauti za Busara 2012
Sudan is a massively diverse country, geographically and politically linking the Middle East to the rest of Africa. Sudan has been a musical crossroads for centuries, with a long extending history intertwined with that of its neighboring countries - Egypt, Eritrea, Ethiopia, South Sudan, Central Republic, Chad and Libya. The ancient Hajj route led musicians travelling from West Africa and neighboring regions through Sudan and over centuries they added to the rich diversity of traditional rhythms and dances that can now be found here.
Camirata Group, based in Khartoum, specialise in showcasing the diverse traditional musical and dance styles of Sudan.
During 1997 respected multi-instrumentalist and group leader, Dafaalla Elhag had a vision, from which the Camirata Group emerged; to set up an orchestra of Sudanese traditional musical instruments. Their repertoire was sourced from all over the country and played on over 8 stringed instruments and various drums, originally by a humble trio of folk musicians. In striving to reach wider audiences, the group ran workshops and gradually built interest, collaborating with more musicians, increasing its core membership to 15 members including dancers.
Now, the band performs regularly at events around the capital, where the group’s aim is to create a common ground to unify Sudanese sentiments through its music. They are now one of the groups based at the Sudanese Traditional Music Centre, managed by Daffaalla. The centre’s primary concern is to promote traditional music of Sudan; practicing, documenting and offering training for musicians and composers in numerous styles. As well as organising music concerts and festivals, the centre also conducts extensive research on the origins of traditional musical instruments and at its core, promotes “peace and peaceful living through music and culture”.
Camirata performs songs from all across the country such as “Farsab” from East Sudan accompanied by a sword dance; “Darb al Habib” (The Road to My Sweetheart) - a song from Kordofan in West Sudan; Jamal Jin (Charming Beauty) - from Darfur; and “Al Furag” (Separation) from Nubia in the far north of Sudan. At Sauti za Busara festival the group will also perform songs from South Sudan such as “Konji Kwanj”, a Lur rhythm and dance, sung in Dinka language.
Camirata’s two performances at Sauti za Busara will take us all on a musical tour sharing the rich diversity of instruments, rhythms, costumes and dances of all across Sudan.With thanks to the British Council Sudan