"Visit Dogon country IV - Tireli, mask dance." Top 5 Page for this destination Mali Things to Do Tip by pfsmalo
Mali Things to Do: 145 reviews and 286 photos
We went to the village of Tireli to witness the mask dance. Of course this is only the tourist's version, but quite a spectacle. With the musicians and dancers the whole village comes out to take part with hand clapping and a bit of foot stomping. Creates a very good atmosphere. We went quite early in the morning to be there for around 10.30am so the sun wasn't too high and then had lunch in the shade with the village chief. In 1999 we paid around 100/120 euros for the spectacle.Well worth it if you are invited to go. It is like a poetic mini-opera where every mask has its place in the Dogon ritual. Some masks take the form of the female but women are not allowed to wear the masks. The Kanaga masks symbolise the different elements : water, earth and the sky with the stilt mask representing the young Dogon girl and the fineness of her long legs. The "Awa", ie. the elders watchful that the dancers follow the steps and the order of the ritual. After an hour and a half of this incessant drumming and dancing, eyes full of colour, we retired to the shade for a cool drink and lunch.
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