Thursday, June 20

Dervish whirling dance from Syrian band Broukar at RWMF

Not a finger is out of sync during the ‘Kecak’ dance performed by Kobagi Kecak. (File photo)

Not a finger is out of sync during the ‘Kecak’ dance performed by Kobagi Kecak. (File photo)

KUCHING: Syrian band Broukar will be performing the ancient Dervish whirling dance of mysticism at the Rainforest World Music Festival (RWMF), which is set to be held at the Sarawak Cultural Village in Damai from Aug 5-7.

The dervish dance represents a mystical journey of man’s spiritual ascent through mind and love to attain perfection.

The whirling movements symbolise turning towards the truth, while the changes in his attire as he dances symbolise his growth through love, deserting his ego and finding the truth and arriving at “perfection”.

Accompanied by a traditional Arab music band, the performance emphasises topics within Sufism, as this dance is based primarily on the rotation and hand movements in reference to the name of God and His spiritual gift to mankind, where He embraces all mankind and creation with affection and love and ultimately, the dancer portrays that man can learn to do the same.

The dance portrays the spiritual journey as a man who learns to love and to be of service to the whole of creation, to all creatures without discrimination of believes, races, classes and nations.

Named after an ancient hand-made fabric from Damascus, Broukar was founded in 2007 in Syria by Taoufik Mirkhan, Amer Dahbar and Adnan Fathallah and now includes other participating band members such as the Dervish Whirling Dancer, Ahmad Alkhatib, the cellist hadil Mirkhan, percussionist Modar Salama as well as an oud player and vocalist Bayan Rida.

Together, the main concern of the band is to provide authentic oriental music in all its colours and sources, with the revival of the musical heritage of the East.

The city of Damascus has long been one of the Arab world’s centres for cultural and artistic innovation, especially in classical Arab music.

Festival tickets and updates are now available online or from ticketing agents listed at, with pre-sale prices available until Aug 4.

The event has been voted as one of the top 35 World Music Festivals by Songlines Magazine for the sixth year in a row and is supported by the Ministry of Tourism and Culture Malaysia, Ministry of Tourism Sarawak and endorsed by Tourism Malaysia with Malaysia Airlines Berhad as the presenting sponsor.