Deira City Centre Brings Emirati Traditions to Forefront for Eid Al Adha & UAE National Day

Published November 23rd, 2009 - 10:21 GMT

Deira City Centre will give its visitors the unique opportunity to experience age-old Emirati traditions and customs as part of its week-long celebrations of Eid Al Adha and UAE National Day.

The events will begin on 27 November and include live Emirati song and dance performances each day from 6 to 9pm with workshops to teach Emirati crafts and highlight traditional Emirati games played in the Bedouin times from 1 to 4 December at its Centre stage, opposite Carrefour.

The first highlight of the exclusive programme at Deira City Centre will be an age old Emirati wedding custom, Al Dan Wedding Zafa, where women carry henna from the groom’s uncle’s place to the groom’s house. The performance will be similar to a wedding procession around the mall and will include 15 elderly men and women.

The second distinctive performance is the celebration of a child having memorised the Quran and is called Al Motawa'a Children. A group of 12 to 15 children, both boys and girls, will walk the mall with their “motawa’a” (teacher) and recite Emirati poetry and songs together with versus from the holy book.

“As an integral part of our community, we believe it is extremely important to play a role in highlighting the customs and traditions of our country,” said Fuad Najjar, Vice-President, Deira City Centre. “Some of the acts and traditions re-enacted here are more of a memory than anything else. They are a thing of the past. We hope that not just expatriate residents and tourists but the new generation of Emiratis will come along to this enriching educational journey to the mall.”

The workshops on stage will include professionals who will teach shoppers how to make various traditional Emirati handicrafts such as a “teli” – decoration used on traditional Arab women’s outfits, fishing nets and baskets, ropes (used during Bedouin days) and “Borgo’o” – what females cover their face with.

Together with Juma Al Majid Centre for Culture and Heritage, Deira City Centre will also host a photographic exhibition of a rare collection of 30 historic images, some of which will highlight the old rulers of the UAE and valuable moments from the day that the country united.

Other traditional performances include Al Bedewiyeh, a fifteen-man wedding preparation tradition where all the men go to pick up the bride from her house; Al Madeema, a circular performance where men with drums and sticks compete in a traditional dance to outperform each other; Al Wayliya, where men and women talk to each other in verse, and lastly Al Bahriyeh, where men dance in homage to the ocean.

There will also be coffee and dates, a falcon display and special arrangements for henna application. During the three days of Eid Al Adha, Deira City Centre will be giving away chocolates and on National Day and distributing UAE flags. 

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