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Al Zaytouna London Dabke Group

Dabke is the national dance of Palestine and is often seen in festivals, celebrations and weddings. Since the British occupation in Palestine in 1917, Dabke became a representation of Palestinian identity and was associated with political and national aspirations, particualry after the disaster of 1948 when the state of Israel was declared and hundred of thousands of Palestinians were deported from their land. Since then Dabke became the national dance of Palestinians and was emphasized more in refugee camps, both in Gaza and the West Bank, and in the Diaspora. Some of Al Zaytouna group members come originally from Palestinian villages that no longer exist; Dier Snade, Barbara, Huoj, refugee camps; Asker in Nablus, Jabalia refugee camp, and the Gaza strip, other members come from other backgrounds, all feel the necessity to promote Palestinian culture to the West.

AlZaytouna London Dabke groups, thus, aims to show this cultural journey of Palestinians throughout dancing Dabke. The group recently performed at the Bloomsbury Theatre as part of How Palestine Became Israel show in memory of the Deir Yassin Masacre. We received positive feedback from the audience who enjoyed experiencing Dabke dance for the first time in the London. We, therefore, will be working on giving more opportunities to U.K audiences to experience Palestinian Dabke through performing at the WOMAD festival 2006. www.londondabke.com

Updated Dec 30, 09:46 am

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