The Moroccan Ministry of Culture, in cooperation and coordination with the village community of Ain El Louh and the Timat Association for Atlas Arts, organizes every summer the National Festival of Ahidous.
A group of teams belonging to the regions (Ifrane – Khenifra – El Hajeb – Meknes – Beni Mellal – Khemisset – Sefrou – Taza – Pullman) will participate in this festival. Participation is expected to develop by adding other regions and destinations. This festival is considered one of the major cultural and artistic events that have been a great success at the national level, with an annual audience of more than forty thousand visitors and spectators.
The festival aims to take care of the Moroccan national oral heritage, especially the Amazigh one, and to take care of and preserve the art of Ahidous. Paying attention to teams, groups, and associations interested in the art of Ahidous, encouraging and motivating them, and urging them to give and continue. In addition to introducing this art, bringing it closer to the masses, endearing it to the younger generations, and encouraging areas of research and study in its many and complex fields.
About the art of Ahidous
This Amazigh collective and performing art appeared in the Middle Atlas region ages ago. It is the art that has been associated since its inception in the natural and geographical milieu of the Middle Atlas man, where forests, water, forests, mountains, and resorts are rich in greenery and sources. This art, which appeared for the first time in its circular shape, consisted of women and men alike, and in its semicircular form, was an expression of the joys, delights, and collective joys that accompany man’s revival of his mountainous and agricultural life in the plains and borders of the Middle Atlas. Ahidous is usually known for the dances and collective physical expressions that we find sometimes even in areas whose inhabitants do not speak Amazigh, but researchers, interested, and scholars agree that his original home is the Middle Atlas, the natural and geographical field in which the components of poetry, singing, dance, and rhythm are complete. The bandir (or tambourine) is considered the “talent” the only instrument or musical instrument used in percussion, and it is accompanied by beating on the palms of female and male voices in a coherent circular shape made up of shoulders at times and hands at other times. The chief of the band or presenter designs his dances and performances in musically and dynamically consistent panels. Ahidous’s poems and words are drawn from the daily life of the Atlantean people and sometimes go beyond this geographical area to include some national, regional, and international events. The number of teams involved in this art in the Kingdom of Morocco exceeds 80 teams, in which the young element forms the backbone.