Starts: Sunday, 16 August, 2015 12:00am
Ends: Sunday, 16 August, 2015 03:00am
The Ashanti have their own traditional calendar in which every first day of the month is celebrated as the Akwasidae Festival. After libations are poured over the thrones of the former kings in some private rooms comes the time of the great happy ceremony. In the shade of a highly colourful umbrella sits the king, wrapped in brightly coloured fabric and adorned with antique solid gold jewellery (Ashanti golden jewels and masks are considered master pieces of African art). At the feet of her majesty opens up a narrow corridor made of dignitaries with various functions: ritual sword bearers, guards armed with powder rifles, courtiers carrying the knives used for executions, and carriers of ostrich feather fans. Next to the king are seated the elders and the advisers under the authority of the royal speaker who holds in his hands the symbols of power covered in gold. During the ceremony, the courtiers bring their gifts and the “griots” tell the story of the past Ashanti kings, while drum and ivory trump players give rhythm to the ceremony. Pretty big women, wrapped in a vivid red cloth, perform traditional dances characterized by a series of delicate movements alternated with rapid moves from one end of the stage to the other.
This authentic ceremony takes place in one of the last African kingdom to have kept unchanged all of its rituals. We will experience the splendour, the colours and the atmosphere of the great monarchies of the forest of yesteryear.