VICTORIA FALLS, Zimbabwe - Mary "Fred"
Forrest's four tribal groups perform a program called Traditional
Dancing every night except Christmas at her Falls Craft Village,
a tourist attraction that replicates the life-style of six ethnic
groups in Zimbabwe.
||Forrest and her husband, Cyril, had the idea
to create a public showcase for native dancing in the Zambezi
river area after they reproduced a tribal Ndbele village near
the fabled falls. The Forrests, who had made an extensive
study of traditional African societies, constructed the village
according to the specifications of a tribal headman.
Falls Craft Village is now the only place in Zimbabwe where traditional
dances can be seen on a regular basis. Though Zimbabwe has a national
dance Company that performs native dances, its venues are limited
and the dancing in tribal communities is off-limits to the public.
|Traditional Dancing began in February 1970 with one Makishi
(the collective name for several tribes) dancer, who was then
working as a tailor, and four drummers. Later, seven dancers
from the Shangan tribe were added to the troupe to perform
in public the dances done in their villages. Forrest, who
has studied ballet and modern dance, expanded the Traditional
Dancing program after her husband's death in 1982. Now, seventyfive
dancers and drummers perform ten or eleven different traditional
dances every night.
Visit the web site : http://www.fallscraftvillage.com/home.htm