Harmonizing Seychellois Heritage: Moutya dance takes centre stage, uniting cultures through rhythmic celebrations

Share
Tweet
Post
Send

Almost a year after earning its designation as a UNESCO Heritage Asset, Berno Cedras, a seasoned artist and the head of the Lecho band in Seychelles, passionately delves into the intricacies of the Moutya dance and its profound relevance to the people of Seychelles.

In an exclusive interview with VoyagesAfriq, Berno Cedras the charismatic leader of the Lecho band, not only highlights the dance’s artistic aspects, but delves into its historical roots, carrying a narrative of indomitable resilience, unwavering strength, and unity across generations.

“This isn’t just a dance; it’s a historical journey. Centuries ago, when our ancestors toiled as slaves on this island, enduring meager wages and oppressive conditions, Moutya became our voice. It’s more than a dance; it’s a song, a melody that encapsulates our pain and struggles,” Berno passionately explains.

Berno Cedras

His love for storytelling and music, cultivated since childhood, led to the creation of the Lecho band. Reflecting on his early connection with music, Berno shares, “I fell in love with music at the tender age of 9 or 10. Every time I sing Moutya, it’s transformative. It’s like taking flight—a connection to my roots. With 25 years of experience in local music, I carry our stories wherever I go. I’ve traveled to 17 countries, sharing our culture through music.”

Berno emphasizes the Lecho band’s commitment to showcasing Seychelles as more than just pristine beaches. “We are not just a band; we are ambassadors of our culture. Whenever we travel, Moutya travels with us. We are dedicated to modernizing and fusing Moutya seamlessly into different cultures.”

Moutya, deeply embedded in Seychelles’ history, arrived with enslaved Africans, providing an outlet for expressing sentiments about harsh living conditions and social injustice. Berno describes Moutya as a dance performed by a bonfire, accompanied by heated drums, rhythmic drumming, dancing, and soulful singing.

In conclusion, Berno ‘s vision extends beyond entertainment; it’s a mission to diversify Seychelles’ global image. “We want Seychelles to be known not just for its breathtaking beaches but for its rich culture and arts,” he affirms, underlining the band’s dedication to a modern fusion of Moutya that resonates with audiences worldwide.

Share
Tweet
Post
Send

Related Posts

Travel Indaba ends with great success

The 2024 edition of Africa’s Tourism Indaba (ATI) has ended with many exhibitors showing gratitude to the organisers, South Africa Tourism for the opportunity created and the connections achieved over

Sponsored

Follow Us

Follow Us on X