Every tourist who is lucky enough to visit the resort country of Egypt has an idea of the national dances and traditions of this state. Usually, these dances are not impressive and sometimes even boring for the audience. But Tanoura dance is a different matter.
Tanoura is a traditional national dance in Egypt. Its peculiarity is that only men perform the dance. The etymology of the word has Arabic roots and is translated as a skirt. The basis of the dance is a circling artist around its axis, necessarily counterclockwise.
Egyptians are deeply religious people. Therefore, it is no secret that dance carries a religious meaning. This dance symbolizes the rotation of the Earth around the sun and personifies the Kaaba bypass in Mecca.
Tanoura dance music also has Arabic motifs and is vaguely reminiscent of the dance tunes of the countries of the east. Traditionally, music is played to the accompaniment of drums, flutes, and tambourines.
The history of dance
For the first time, the dance appeared in the 13th century under the command of Jalaluddin Rumi (Persian Sufi poet); the men indulged in prayers and in a state of trance approached God.
Jalaluddin Rumi said: “Any love is a bridge to divine love. However, those who have not experienced it do not know! “. And Tanoura dance was the true bridge to God.
Rumi’s practice ‘spawned an Egyptian form of Tanoura, distinguished by the use of a multi-colored skirt. It also turned into a dance by non-Sophians, including dancers outside the Islamic world”. Now it becomes clear why the skirt has become the main element in Tanoura.
Ever since that time, only men have danced. As a tradition, the dance was passed from one generation to the next through the male line. At first, only men serving God could perform the dance. However, in modern times, like many traditions of Egypt, Tanoura has undergone changes and has become the most popular and recognizable Egyptian tradition for foreign tourists.
Tanoura dancer can spin from 15 minutes to several hours! During the performance of technically sophisticated elements with skirts that cover the dancer multi-layered. A fluffy and dramatic layer of skirts serves as an attribute of the presentation. And experienced performers involve tambourines and other elements in the dance.
Tanoura is not just dancing that can be easily learned. This is a complex art that embodies the best traditions of the Egyptian people. But this is no reason to be upset! You can master other equally exciting dance classes.
And by the way, you will spend time not only with pleasure but also with benefit for your health. How exactly dance affects the feeling of the body you can find out in this article from our blog.How fascinating this sight is, not words! Entire patterns and ornaments are made of skirts and fabric, an amazing picture of movement and bright colors is created.
How much do you think skirts weigh in which they perform Tanoura? You will not believe! One skirt can weigh up to 18 kilograms, and a dancer usually puts on more than 3 skirts for dancing. Not everyone can easily and gracefully move with such a heavy suit.
Speaking of meanings and symbolism. An important part of the dance is the movement of the artist’s hands. One hand is raised up and the other is down. This means the union of earth and sky together. In general, from the point of view of energy, the dance of Tanoura creates the energy that the dancer passes through itself and transmits to the audience.
How does the Egyptian Tanoura differ from the Turkish Dervish?
In Turkey, there is a national dance Dervish, which has much in common with the Egyptian Tanoura. But if you understand and carefully study these 2 dances, you will find many differences. The dervish is performed in special hats made of wool and white robes, and the main element of the Egyptian dance is voluminous motley skirts and tambourine-type attributes.
The Turkish dance has a group performance, while Tanoura implies the only solo.
In the Egyptian Tanoura, very great importance is given to the skirt. All attention is focused not even on the artist, but on skirts and manipulations with them. It’s no wonder often Tanoura is called the dance of the skirt. It would seem that these two dances are so similar. But in the fun, how many differences they have both in history and in the specifics of the performance.
Tanoura dance is a show of soul and body. It serves as a prayer, an appeal to God. Of course, in words, it is difficult to imagine the true beauty of the Egyptian dance. Therefore, if luck smiles at you, then do not miss this chance and see the performance of Tanoura dance.
Tanoura is ... a complex art that embodies the best traditions of the Egyptian people.