Malaysian dances charm Hifa audience

THE dean of Malaysia University of Arts faculty, Mohd Yunus Ismail on Wednesday said dancing was important as it helped to foster cultural and racial harmony.

BY TAFADZWA KACHIKO

Speaking on the sidelines of his group Aswara’s thrilling performance as part of the ongoing Harare International Festival of Arts (Hifa) at the Standard Complex, Harare Girls High School, Ismail said music and dance could be used to foster unity.

“We are a multicultural and multiracial nation, so dances are very significant to us. If you have seen us performing, we have done dances from the Malay community, Indian and Chinese community and from East Malaysia,” he said.

“We are united by these dances. Cultural dances bring us together. As people of different races, we learn and understand our diverse cultures through dances.”

Ismail said his team was enjoying its stay in the country and looked forward to learning local dances.

“We are eager to see the local cultural dances live and learn. On Friday (today), we will have the opportunity to watch all the performances,” he said.

Aswara Dance Company’s performance dubbed Tapestry of Malaysia, was characterised with playful teasing couple dances, robust bravado male dances and demure female-only dances.

Ismail said they specialised in traditional and contemporary Malaysian dance.

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