The organisers of the first of this weekends two Sufi Nights in Fez had every reason to be pleased by the large audience that turned up. The beautiful Dar Mernissi venue was packed with standing room only for late comers
After an introduction by Faouzi Skali, the first half of the evening was given to a discussion on Sufi poetry. While appreciated by most of the audience, Americans and Australians and New Zealanders, who had no French, struggled to understand as no translation service was available.
|A good night for Faouzi Skali (left) and the leader of the Wazzaniya (right)|
However, once the joint tariqas of the Siqilliyya and Wazzaniyya commenced their performance there was no need for translation. This is what a majority of the audience had come for and they were not disappointed. While only a moderate sized venue, the acoustics in Dar Mernissi were perfect for the samaa.
|Australian artist Michael Wright|
The audience included many well known figures in the arts and music scene from Fez and as far away as Australia. Singer Annas Habib, who is now based in Europe, was back in Fez as was filmmaker Joe Lukawski. Australian Artist Michael Wright, whose fascinating exhibition of photographs and mixed media, Dead Car Dreaming: of the Rainbow Serpent is showing at the ALIF Riad until Sunday, had originally planned to attend the now postponed Festival of Sufi Culture was in attendance and pleased that the two Sufi Nights coincided with his visit to Fez.
A second Sufi Night tomorrow will follow the same format and feature the Tariqa Derkaouiya. Starting time for the discussion "The Seven Cities of Love" is 8.30 with the tariqa scheduled to perform at 9.30.
|The beautiful Dar Mernissi was packed|
For those unfamiliar with Fez, the Dar Mernissi venue is at 3 Rue Salaj, which is the street directly across the road from the steps coming down from the entrance to the Hotel Batha. Arrive early if you want a seat!