The National Tribal Dance Festival brings together Indian tribes to showcase their culture, art and tribal dances.
The 2019 event, held between December 27 and 29 in Raipur, the capital of the Chhattisgarh state, was graced by artistes from six other countries including Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Belarus, Maldives, Thailand and Uganda.
Uganda was represented by Mzizi Ensemble cultural dance group. They showcased cultural equipment like the long fiddle and cultural dances including olunyege, Amagunju, Raka-raka among others.
The chairperson board of trustees at the Uganda National Cultural Centre (UNCC), Sam Okello, who led the team, said that they had one of the best experiences in India.
“According to the Chief Minister despite our group being the smallest it was the best and the dance group made Uganda proud. We left them yearning for more,” Okello said.
“As a country we are trying to put much effort in promoting culture. The amount of investment the government of India has put in is similar to that Uganda is trying to put in, trying to build regional cultural centres.”
He added: “Uganda actually has a lot of cultural dances. Six people captured the attention of thousands of people and even the ministers came and joined us.”
The Second Secretary in charge of the Media, Information and Cultural at the High Commission of India, Durga Dass, said that Ugandan dances are unique and also exciting to watch.
“I will be sending two more Ugandan cultural troupes to India, more than 15 people. They are very energetic in their dancing and unique as well,” Dass.
“Uganda and India are both very rich in culture so we should take benefit from each other.”
Uganda has already signed a memorandum of understanding with the Indian to promote Uganda’s diverse culture.