On Monday night, a group of us went to Islamic Cairo to see the Sufi dance. The dance began with 2 men playing wind instruments in the balcony of the Wikalat Al Ghouri. An assortment of drums, wind instruments, and a singer's heartbreaking cries for forgiveness soon created a deafening array of sound. The dancing began with men in white beating their tambpourines and spinning in circles. Then 1 man in a colourful costume soon entered the stage and spun for almost 30 minutes! 2 others joined him and the display of colour and sound was mesmerizing and dizzying.
According to Wikipedia, Sufi dancing is a physically active meditation which originated among Sufis, and which is still practiced by the Sufi Dervishes of the Mevlevi order. It is a customary dance performed within the worship ceremony, through which dervishes aim to reach the source of all perfection, or kemal. This is sought through abandoning one's nafs, egos or personal desires, by listening to the music, focusing on God, and spinning one's body in repetitive circles, which has been seen as a symbolic imitation of planets in the solay system orbiting the sun.
Shows run Mondays, Wednesdays, and Saturdays from 8:30PM-10PM. ENTRANCE IS FREE!! The box office opens 2 hours before the show and closes once they’ve sold out . We arrived at 7:45pm and there were still seats available.
More information on the Sufi Dance in Cairo available here.