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HUMN Final Paper Cultural Experience , Rwandan Traditional Dance

Rwandan Traditional Dance

The Rwandan Traditional Dance is a cultural exposition of the people of Rwanda through music and dance. In the cultural exposition, the video is showing the people of Rwanda dancing vigorously and in synchrony during the celebrations of the country’s independence in an auditorium in Kigali Rwanda (Igize).The link to the video is:

The specific type of dancers that featured in this video is the Intore dancers. From research, the specific type of dance that this people were engaging in is called the Umushayayo dance. This dance has great moves and the moves are also marvelous. The drumming style of this particular type of dance is so enchanting that it can make someone to also try and join in the dances. The dance portrays the traditional Rwanda as the costumes are also quite unique. From the group, we could see a lot of head gears, the women were wearing beards that run diagonally from the right shoulder to the waist. There is also the wearing of the long skirts among this group of people. From seeing the dance moves, I could see that the people were radiating a very high sense of kindness and purity and they were also inviting. It looked as if they were inviting the people to fo and sample what Rwanda has to offer.

Kigali the venue of the dance group is a locality that not only shows promise but also is inviting to the people to come and witness one of the jewels to have come from Africa. The organized dance I witnessed earlier, the long dresses and the stickling to the instructions that have been given by the Choreographer also mirrors a specific cultural activity that was turned into the law: umuganda. Umuganda simply means community service. It is believed that people should serve the community at all times not because you never know the dangers may abound when an individual is faced with serious health complications because the town is dirty (Mbabazi). This belief has enabled the people to view the cleanup exercises in the towns as noble duty that calls for their own initiative. For this initiative to be a success there had to be a cultivation of a very deep sense of being proud because of one’s culture (Mbabazi). The people love their country and their city and thus they are willing to keep it spotless clean not only for their own benefits but also for the benefits of other people who may want to call Rwanda a home and maybe they want to stay in Kigali. This cooperation through the community service is seen in their videos specifically because they executed all the moves with such perfection (Archer).

The choreography in the dance where the people are so energetic and they pump their legs down in unison, is something that caught my eye. These people were so energetic in their movements and they seemed not to get tired at all (Archer). Later, I have got to learn that the jumping of the feet, the vigorously pounding of the feet on the floor is a representation of the culture of Rwanda particularly the hills where the people descended from during the migration process. I also learnt that the vigor in the dancing is not similar in all situations. The dance often portrays periods of happiness and sometimes it is practiced when the people are sad. The sacred nature of their costumes also caught my eye. Previously I have been used to dance styles where the dancers in question try so hard to use loose clothing so that they can properly dance. These dudes put on long skirts that ordinarily would have made it so easy to dance in those skirts. The folding of the long bedcover like type of clothing also reveals that this group of people was willing to enjoy themselves but they did not want to lose any ounce of modesty that they had. Another question that was rocking my mind is whether the dance moves which have been made to perception are commercialized.

Some of the learning tools particularly those that come from the topic of Music used and identified in the dance are rhythm and harmony. While these two are widely described as components that make music what it is, these two are also vital in the understanding of dance. In the dance video, harmony exists because of the synchronous performance of the steps. The rhythm makes the dances appear not only to be good but also memorable. An individual could actually enjoy them and learn so much from these tools.

I interpret rhythm and harmony in the learning tools and what I discovered is that harmony in the music is the one that should be used. These harmonies were the great collaborators.

Works Cited

Archer, Bert. "The Most Inviting City In Africa?". Bbc.Com, 2020,

Mbabazi, Donna. "Rwandan Traditional Dance: A Firm Grip On Culture". The New Times | Rwanda, 2018,

Igize. Rwanda's Traditional Dance - Inganzo Ngari. 2017.

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