Stories > 14. Zanzibar and Pemba 2020

Day Zero: February 15, 2020 – Assemble in Zanzibar

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This Field Visit to Zanzibar is all about celebrating Siti Binti Saad, the Mother of Taarab.   We assembled in Nairobi on Friday the 14th of February and flew to Zanzibar on Kenya Airways on the first flight on Saturday, making our way to the Ngawala Hotel.  Temperature 33 degrees centigrade.  Partially cloudy.   Saturday…

Day One: February 16, 2020 (Ngawala Hotel)

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On our first day of recording, we follow Siti Binti Saad’s footsteps to Bi Kidude and to Amina Abdalla, a performer we met on the grounds of the Ngawala Hotel (Coincidently, Ngawala is another name for Dhow), where we recorded three groups.    Nyota Za Meremeta:     The group’s name means ‘twinkling stars’.  …

Day Two: February 17, 2020 (Stonetown)

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Our second day we drove into Stone Town.   We recorded the first two groups at the Emerson Spice Hotel along the seaside. This hotel is an Arab style hotel, reminiscent of the rhiads in Marrakech with lots of small courtyards.    In the Emerson Spice Hotel we filmed the first two groups in a…

Day Four: February 19, 2020 (Maruhabi Palace)

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We drove back towards Stone Town and stopped at the Maruhubi Palace ruins. This palace was built by the third Sultan of Zanzibar from 1980-1982 for his secondary wives. It is now in ruins but you can still see the main buildings with baths inside, a massive overhead aqueduct that supplied water to the palace…

Day Five: February 20, 2020 (DCMA)

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We started at the Ngalawa Hotel recording Kithara who we had to stop recording on Day 3 because of noise. It was great we could get them all to come to the hotel unexpectedly today. After this we drove back to Stonetown to record at the DCMA and the Culture Musical Club.  The three groups: …