By Dana Leger
Rabat – The 24th Fez Festival of World Sacred Music will be held Friday, June 22, to Saturday, June 30, under the theme “Ancestral Knowledge.”
Some of the artists performing in this year’s festival include Jordi Savall, Dhafer Youssef, Soweto Gospel Choir, Goran Bregovic, and Ensemble Shams.
Under the high patronage of King Mohammed VI, the festival and its forum come within the scholarly, artistic, and spiritual tradition of the city of Fez.
The festival has contributed to maintaining dialogue with the sacred through its forum and by highlighting sacred arts and music.
As an incarnating symbol of interfaith and intercultural dialogue and reflection, the festival calls for an exchange of traditions and conversation in a world that is going through economic, political, and social change.
The festival is much like the city’s medina, as crossing its gates is a way to become immersed in millennia of traditions, tolerance, and spirituality.
For centuries, Fez has been the political and intellectual capital of Morocco and has always remained a center of exchange for cultures and knowledge. Many thinkers, scholars, artists, and religious men and women have been welcomed by Fez.
The diverse array of artistic propositions, prestigious creations, and 60 concerts and shows take place in the old city.
The artistic events are spread throughout the city at heritage sites worthy of being rediscovered and valued. The majestic Bab Al Makina square, where official ceremonies of the Royal Palace used to take place, and the medina riads are explored throughout three nights of shows, in addition to others.
The forum, which will take place concurrently from June 23 to 25, will feature the participation of a number of scholars, writers, and philosophers who will highlight tolerance and living together through the arts and music.
For the first time since its creation, the festival will offer workshops on artistic initiation. Japanese and Arabic calligraphy, Central Asian diphonic singing, and musical meditation will enable festival-goers to learn artistic practices that allow for internal exploration.
In partnership with the French Institute of Fez, these workshops will take place from June 26 to 29 throughout four morning sessions in the beautiful setting of the medina.