Thursday, March 18, 2010

Tanzania: Sukuma Dance

The Sukuma people live in an area called Usukuma which is located to the west and south of Lake Victoria, the second largest lake in the world. The area is only a few hundred miles south of the equator where there is a year round temperature between 60-100 degrees Fahrenheit.

Dancing is a vital part of Sukuma life. The Sukuma are famous throughout Tanzania for their innovative dancing styles. Dancers continue to perform and compete in annual competitions, creating new costumes and using new and old dances just as their ancestors did over a hundred years ago.

The competitive dance season begins in Usukuma in June when people have free time from their farm work and can celebrate their new supply of food for the year. The season can last through August or until people resume their farming activities.

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