Fara (literally, “to ask” in Rotuman) is a traditional Rotuman cultural and social event, occurring in the summertime festival of “av’ manea” (“party time” in Rotuman) where groups of singers and dancers traverse from house to house in a prescribed area to perform and entertain their hosts, “asking”, as the name suggests, for their hospitality and participation.
Rotuman, also referred to as Rotunan, Rutuman or Fäeag Rotuma, is an Austronesian language spoken by the indigenous people of the South Pacific island group of Rotuma, an island with a Polynesian-influenced culture that was incorporated as a dependency into the Colony of Fiji in 1881. Classification of Rotuman is difficult due to the large number of loan words from Samoan and Tongan, as a result of much cultural exchange over the history of the Pacific. Linguist Andrew Pawley groups the language with the West Fijian languages in a West Fijian – Rotuman branch of the Central Pacific sub-group of Oceanic languages.
It is believed that fara traces its roots back to the “manea’ hune’ele” (beach parties) of old, where young people would picnic at the beach from late afternoon through night-time, singing, dancing and making-merry. For young people it was primarily undertaken as a carefree environment in which they could spend time with prospective partners without the prying eyes of a normal close-knit Rotuman community. However, the politically powerful churches, particularly the Methodist Church, fearing the rise in immoral behaviour resulting from such licentious escapades, and family’s fears of loss of the socially important virginity (girls were expected to be married with their virginity intact, attracting a higher bride-price in traditional betrothals) sparked calls to end the practice of manea’ hune’ele. According to research, in the search to replace the tradition, the practice of fara was created, providing a more wholesome way for the young to court.
Virginity is the state of a person who has never engaged in sexual intercourse. There are cultural and religious traditions that place special value and significance on this state, predominantly towards unmarried females, associated with notions of personal purity, honor and worth.
Modern fara involves groups of performers of varying size, often travelling in village or sometimes even district-sized groups. Once at a particular house or hall, they begin dancing and singing, accompanied by guitars, drums and ukulele, and invite the hosts to join in. In return the recipients of this entertainment give the performers food and drink, (usually fruit and cordial) and enact the “nau te”, an unceremonious tradition of sprinkling performers (in all Rotuman social environments) with perfume or talcum powder. This historically involved home-made turmeric, but the easier western alternatives now hold precedence.
The guitar is a fretted musical instrument that usually has six strings. It is typically played with both hands by strumming or plucking the strings with either a guitar pick or the finger(s)/fingernails of one hand, while simultaneously fretting with the fingers of the other hand. The sound of the vibrating strings is projected either acoustically, by means of the hollow chamber of the guitar, or through an electrical amplifier and a speaker.
A drum kit — also called a drum set, trap set, or simply drums — is a collection of drums and other percussion instruments, typically cymbals, which are set up on stands to be played by a single player, with drumsticks held in both hands, and the feet operating pedals that control the hi-hat cymbal and the beater for the bass drum. A drum kit consists of a mix of drums and idiophones – most significantly cymbals, but can also include the woodblock and cowbell. In the 2000s, some kits also include electronic instruments. Also, both hybrid and entirely electronic kits are used.
The ukulele is a member of the guitar family of instruments. It generally employs four nylon or gut strings or four courses of strings. Some strings may be paired in courses, giving the instrument a total of six or eight strings.
Fara season is considered the highlight of the year for Rotuman people the world over. It is common for groups of Rotuman individuals who have spread across the globe through diaspora, to return to the island at av’ mane’a and participate in the festivities. It is said that the island’s population often doubles at fara time, as compared to the mid-year numbers, as a result of the popularity of the fara.
Folklore is the expressive body of culture shared by a particular group of people; it encompasses the traditions common to that culture, subculture or group. These include oral traditions such as tales, proverbs and jokes. They include material culture, ranging from traditional building styles to handmade toys common to the group. Folklore also includes customary lore, the forms and rituals of celebrations such as Christmas and weddings, folk dances and initiation rites. Each one of these, either singly or in combination, is considered a folklore artifact. Just as essential as the form, folklore also encompasses the transmission of these artifacts from one region to another or from one generation to the next. Folklore is not something one can typically gain in a formal school curriculum or study in the fine arts. Instead, these traditions are passed along informally from one individual to another either through verbal instruction or demonstration. The academic study of folklore is called Folklore studies, and it can be explored at undergraduate, graduate and Ph.D. levels.
May Day is a public holiday usually celebrated on 1 May. It is an ancient Northern Hemisphere spring festival and a traditional spring holiday in many cultures. Dances, singing, and cake are usually part of the festivities. In the late 19th century, May Day was chosen as the date for International Workers' Day by the Socialists and Communists of the Second International to commemorate the Haymarket affair in Chicago. International Workers' Day can also be referred to as "May Day", but it is a different celebration from the traditional May Day.
A party is a gathering of people who have been invited by a host for the purposes of socializing, conversation, recreation, or as part of a festival or other commemoration of a special occasion. A party will typically feature food and beverages, and often music and dancing or other forms of entertainment. In many Western countries, parties for teens and adults are associated with drinking alcohol such as beer, wine, or distilled spirits.
Sudan has a rich and unique musical culture that has been through chronic instability and repression during the modern history of Sudan.
A powwow is a social gathering held by many different Native American communities. A modern pow wow is a specific type of event for Native American people to meet and dance, sing, socialize, and honor their cultures. Pow wows may be private or public. There is generally a dancing competition, with many different types of traditional dances, music and regalia, often with significant prize money awarded. Pow wows vary in length from a one-day event, to major pow wows called for a special occasion which can be up to one week long.
The music of Greenland is a mixture of two primary strands, Inuit and Danish, mixed with influences from the United States and United Kingdom.
A cèilidh or céilí is a traditional Scottish or Irish social gathering. In its most basic form, it simply means a social visit. In contemporary usage, it usually involves dancing and playing Gaelic folk music, either at a house party or a larger concert at a social hall or other community gathering place.
Chapter 2: Compact. The second chapter of the 1997 Constitution of Fiji contains Sections 6 and 7 of the Constitution. They summarize, in "compact" form, the intent and purpose of the Constitution, as well as the goals that it seeks to accomplish. It establishes the principles on which the Fiji government are to be based, and according to which the Constitution is to be interpreted.
The music of Saint Lucia is home to many vibrant oral and folk traditions and is based on elements derived from the music of Africa, especially rhythmically, and Western Europe, dances like the quadrille, polka and waltz. The banjo and cuatro are iconic Lucian folk instruments, especially a four-stringed banjo called the bwa poye. Celebratory songs called jwé show lyricism, and rhythmic complexity. The most important of the Afro-Lucian Creole folk dances is the kwadril. Music is an integral part of Lucian folk holidays and celebrations, as well as the good-natured rivalry between the La Rose and La Marguerite societies. There is little Western classical music on Saint Lucia, and the country's popular music industry is only nascent. There are few recording opportunities, though live music and radio remain a vital part of Lucian culture. Popular music from abroad, especially Trinidadian styles like calypso and soca, is widespread.
Traditional Samoan musical instruments included a fala, which is a rolled-up mat beaten with sticks. It is an idiophone which often accompanied choral singing. Another idiophone, a soundingboard, sometimes accompanied the solo recitation of poetry. A conch shell was blown for signaling. Amusement for small groups and individuals in private was afforded by a jaw harp, a raft panpipe, and a nose-blown flute.
The traditional music of Tuvalu consists of dances, including fatele, fakanau and fakaseasea. The influence of the Samoan missionaries sent to Tuvalu by the London Missionary Society from the 1860s resulted in the suppression of songs about the traditional religions or magic and many songs were lost. As the influence of the missionaries diminished in the 20th century the traditional dances were revived and the siva dance tradition from Samoa also became popular. The fatele, in its modern form, is performed at community events and to celebrate leaders and other prominent individuals.
Music of Punjab reflects the traditions of the Punjab region of the Indian subcontinent, currently divided into two parts: East Punjab (India) and West Punjab (Pakistan). The Punjab has diverse styles of music, ranging from folk and Sufi to classical, notably the Patiala gharana.
Kapa haka is the term for Māori performing arts and literally means to form a line (kapa) and dance (haka). Kapa haka is an avenue for Māori people to express and showcase their heritage and cultural Polynesian identity through song and dance.
The culture of Jordan is based in Arabic and Islamic elements with significant Western influence. Jordan stands at the intersection of the three continents of the ancient world, lending it geographic and population diversity. Notable aspects of the culture include traditional music and clothing of Jordan, as well as an interest in sports. These include football and basketball as well as other imported sports, mainly from western Europe and the United States.
The tautoga is considered the most formal and restrained style of Rotuman dance, usually seen performed in large festivities or ceremonies, or in public opportunities to showcase Rotuman culture. The tautoga style can be seen as comparable to the Tuvaluan fatele or Tongan lakalaka, and the "toga" [ˈtoŋa] sound to the word alludes to such an origin.
Mak Sa'moa is an informal Rotuman dance form derived from Samoan movement styles, including the style of hand movements between man and woman, and the shuffling/twisting of the feet in and out, as in the Siva Samoa.
Sean-nós is a highly ornamented style of unaccompanied traditional Irish singing, and in the singing of Ireland's Gaeltacht.
A meshrep is a traditional male Uyghur gathering that typically includes "poetry, music, dance, and conversation within a structural context". Meshreps typically include music of the Muqam variety and ad-hoc tribunals on moral questions. "Meshrep" may also refer to the Islamic youth groups that became a political force in Ili, Xinjiang in the 1990s. The voluntary societies used extralegal means such as boycotts to enforce what they saw as Islamic mores against gambling, alcohol and drug abuse among young Uyghur men. Amid continuing political campaigns and antigovernment protests launched by these meshrep, the Xinjiang government cracked down on key religious leaders, including meshrep leaders, leading to urban violence in 1997 and the flight of meshrep leaders to Kazakhstan. In November 2010, China successfully petitioned UNESCO to list the traditional meshrep in its List of Intangible Cultural Heritage in Need of Urgent Safeguarding.
Qargi, Qasgi or Qasgiq, Qaygiq, Kashim, Kariyit, a traditional large semi-subterranean men's community house' of the Yup'ik and Inuit, also Deg Hit'an Athabaskans, was used for public and ceremonial occasions and as a men’s residence. The Qargi was the place where men built their boats, repaired their equipment, took sweat baths, educated young boys, and hosted community dances. Here people learned their oral history, songs and chants. Young boys and men learned to make tools and weapons while they listened to the traditions of their forefathers.