Music and dance are an integral part of many cultures, and some of the dance forms have deeply symbolic and even religious significance. Dance, combined with music often weaves an intricate story that carries deep meaning.

In certain african societies, dance goes beyond mere creative expression. It is almost fundamental to the way of life. Play lively music, and you will see people from some regions automatically sway- a fascinating sight.

There is one dance form i haven’t seen that is wonderfully expressive. It is called ATILOGWU, it originates in Anambra state in Eastern Nigeria. The igbos, people of that part of the country consider this to be their “National” Dance.
Atilogwu is a traditionally spirited youth dance from the Igbo ethnic group of Nigeria that focuses on vigorous body movement and often includes acrobatics. In the Igbo language, the word itself “Atilogwu” translates into “has magic—as in sorcery/ witchcraft—been put into it?”

The name stems from rumors that bewitchment or magic potions had to be involved if the children of the village could perform so exuberantly and energetically, while making it look so effortless. The tempo of the dance matches the tempo of the music, which is dependent on the beat of the drum and “ogene,” a metal gong instrument.

The dance is usually performed during festivals and the festivity will also include exotic dishes created from authentic Nigerian recipes, served buffet style.

 

Atilogwu Dance Video

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