Pomp and glamour at Igitaramo

IT was a nostalgic evening as guests were treated to the old age tradition of Igitaramo at Uburanga Arts in Rugando on Friday. Loosely translated as the night assemblage, Igitaramo attracted a sizeable number of Rwandans and foreigners. The tradition is performed around fire, with plenty of maize to roast.
Artistes entertain guests at the event.
Artistes entertain guests at the event.

IT was a nostalgic evening as guests were treated to the old age tradition of Igitaramo at Uburanga Arts in Rugando on Friday.   Loosely translated as the night assemblage, Igitaramo attracted a sizeable number of Rwandans and foreigners.  The tradition is performed around fire, with plenty of maize to roast.

The event kicked off at around 7p.m, with the playing of Umuduri, a traditional music instrument.

It was an event worth attending. The crowd was thrown in a thrill when Ibihame dancers put up an enchanting performance that swept many off their feet.  After their show,   Ibihame took revellers through the rigorous lessons of learning how to guhamiriza (forIntore dancers). It was a moment of laughter and cheers as patrons  pulled rare strokes in an attempt to learn the dance.

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A dancer teaches one of the guests at the night assemblage, how to roast maize.

In his speech, Augustine Hakizimana of Uburanga Arts, reminded guests about the importance of Igitaramo. “We should never forget the culture of sharing knowledge, sharing our harvests and interacting through such gatherings as our fore fathers did long ago,” he said.

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Augustine Hakizimana of Uburanga Arts speaks to the guests at Igitaramo.

It was interesting to see foreigners eager to watch what was being done with curiosity to understand the Rwandan heritage and this brought out the real meaning of the event. The concluding and most breathtaking part was the cultural singing, dancing and poems.

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Guests gather around a fire. (Photos by John Mbanda)

After the dancing session, more lessons were conducted on how to play traditional music instruments, like Umuduri and the local drums. Foods and drinks were available, including local brew Urugwagwa. The next Igitaramo event will be held at the end of May.

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