Apparently, every single day here something surprising and awesome happens.
As with last night’s surprising live music encounter, day #2 kept it’s surprise until dinnertime. Unaware of the good fortune about to befall us, Kanina and I sat to eat at the hotel only to hear the waiter mention a wedding zeffe was starting in the lobby. My heart jumped and my body followed.
We left our table heading for the lobby in hopes of catching a moment of the proceedings. There, a band getting the party started played to the couple. Then, the delightfully happy family began dancing in a small circle, hands in the air in front of the stunning bride and groom, while several drums, a mizmar, and a trumpet played, and guys were singing. After they got the folks excited, they moved the procession up the stairs to the ballroom while playing. I felt like I was peeking in on an ancient tradition bc these instruments predate amplification -as do these traditions, of course. All really old stuff unlike American traditions of dancing to the Chicken Dance at weddings :)
VERY IMPORTANT NOTE: One of my musical hopes in Egypt was to hear a real live mizmar. I’ve only heard them on recordings. Designed to be loud, possibly in Turkey and known first as the Zorna or Zurna (email Cynthia Ricciardi who wrote the history of each instrument for a Helping Hips installment), I used to hate the sound. Then it became my friend bc it cued me to use folkloric movement when I heard it. This instrument goes with several folkloric dances. When improvising dance, you appreciate sounds and rhythms that have significance and give you information on what/ how to dance properly.
So, there I was, scurrying around the outskirts of the party thrilled to see this ancient tradition and hear my friend whom I’d never met, the Mizmar. As I gawked, smiled, and fought back tears I was a little scared of being annoying to the family and friends but I was so excited. I got so into the moment that I had to force myself to take pics. I am posting a video on FB as this post uploads.