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Zaouli Shuffle Dance

Zaouli Shuffle Dance

Zaouli Shuffle Dance

Zaouli or the Zaouli mask dance is a traditional dance in the center of Côte d’Ivoire in the Sassandra-Marahoué district, the region of the Guro-speaking people. The dance is based on a very fast movement of the legs, while the upper part of the body appears immobile or moves only slowly horizontally.

The masks used in the dance were not created until the early 1950s. It was a way for dedicated tradition keepers to revive old Ivorian rituals and culture of past centuries. Some sources speak of a young woman named “Djela Lou Zaouli” (Zaouli, daughter of Djela), who inspired the masks.[1] There are seven different types of Zaouli masks, each embodying its own legendary story. A woman is depicted in the masks, just as the cult of the masks is a tribute to the female gender. The making of a mask takes up to six days. A recurring element of the masks are two framing snake. (from Wikipedia)

 

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