Monday, November 17, 2014

Photo Essay ~ Master Musicians of Joujouka ~ Part Two

In the Ahl Srif mountain range in Northern Morocco the sun drops below the horizon and the temperature drops quickly. But in Joujouka the lights come on and the temperature rises as a group of visiting scholars and musicologists await the performance by the Master Musicians of Joujouka...
(Click all photos to enlarge)

The night starts with a burst of sound from the ghaita players. The instrument is somewhat like an oboe, but with a much harsher penetrating sound.

Once the musicians had settled in two young boys dressed in women's clothes took to the floor and danced with high energy and obvious enjoyment.

Then came the moment many of the visitors and locals had been waiting for - the lighting of the bonfire and the arrival of Boujloud. The pan-like figure was threatening and demoniac as, with a switch of branches and leaves, he attacked anyone within striking distance.

The threatening figure of Boujloud
Boujloud pursues his victims through through the sparks and smoke of the fire
Moving, as in a trance, Boujloud attacks with his branches

Visitors and locals alike were entranced by the spectacle.  Others simply closed their eyes and let the music carry them away.

However, by the end of the night the visitors danced until they could dance no longer.

The night was not only a wonderful musical event, but a display of the warmth and generous hospitality of the Joujouka villagers who guided us back to our houses where sleep and the prospect of a rural breakfast lay ahead.

Organiser Frank Rynne with some of the musicians

The View from Fez would like to thank Frank Rynne for providing us with a perfect stay in the village of Joujouka and the Master Musicians and their families for their wonderful hospitality.

Part one of the photo essay is HERE

The 8th edition of the The Master Musicians of Joujouka three day annual festival takes place 5-7 June 2015 and is booking now

Photo essay: Sandy McCutcheon

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