Mauritius Folklore & Music

mauritius travel and tourism guide
How best to get a feeling of the living culture of a nation than in its folklore and music. Mauritius is blessed with the sounds and rhythms of the western, eastern and African civilisation, which have come across its history. This legacy has been preserved and passed on unscattered through generations. On the other hand some have meld together to yield unique sounds and rhythms.
Mauritius sega The most typical folkloric dance of Mauritius is the Sega of African origin. This erotic dance is pulsated by the beat of the ravane, a circular drum, and other rhythmic instruments like the maravane and triangle. Danced and sung by the slaves, the Sega has been adopted by all Mauritians and is played on all occasions. More recently a new sound, a mixture of the Sega and Reggae music has found its way in our musical culture. This fusion music called the Seggae, a melodious and entertaining new rhythm that reflects the mixed aspect of Mauritius, emerged in the 80's. Originally the music of the Rastafaris and the poor suburbs of Port Louis, it has found its way to the nightclubs and the mainstream of Mauritian local music. You can find an array of albums or compilations that you can buy on CDs or cassettes from a number of Sega and Seggae artists.

There are also traditional music and dances that have been introduced by the Indian and Chinese migrants coming to Mauritius. Few things compares to the refines and elegance of the Indian dances. Dress in colourful sarees the dancers executes precise choreographies with each postures and attitude expressing its own meanings. They are accompanied by the exquisite sound of the sitar and tabla expressing the finest (refined) and magic behind the oriental culture. There are also the very colourful Chinese traditional dance with the ancestral lions and Dragon dances being the best known. The sight of these mystical creatures brought to life by the precision and agility of the dancers is a must be seen. Most of the big hotels organise special cultural shows where you can see these dancers and musicians perform. During festivals the Caudan and Port Louis Waterfront usually organise special shows where you can also admire the rich cultural diversity, which Mauritius has inherited.

Western music is also well represented in the Mauritius culture. There are as always the mainstream music amid rap, hip-hop and rock dominating the scene. But you can see Jazz band and other more traditional music like the waltz as well as all types of ballroom dancing. There is as well a strong following for the 60's to 70's oldies, with the likes of Elvis Presley, Cliff Richard, Englelberd Emperding being part of the national musical heritage. On behalf of the more mainstream Anglo-Saxon music, Mauritians ties to the French culture makes that French music and artists are well known and cherished here.
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