From 1er on November 4, Nefta opens its arms wide to welcome a passionate audience, music lovers and curious about an ancestral culture deeply rooted in a spirituality that characterizes the entire region of Jerid. Rouhaniyet, this Sufi music festival, is celebrating its 6the candle, and baptizes this edition “Houyem”.
Rouhaniyet Nafta is a Festival dedicated to the musical and artistic expressions of the mystics, and particularly those from the world and national heritage of the Sufis. The idea for this festival was born in 2015 from a group of men and women from the Jerid region, from civil society in the city of Nefta in particular, from a passion for ancestral Sufi traditions expressed through sacred and profane music, colossal heritage of humanity in its traditions and in its universality.
The Tunisian South is famous for its poets and scholars and it is also for its masters of spirituality. This place where unparalleled magic works, a place of gathering and meditation, visited and celebrated for a long time by the population of all its surroundings, is the natural host of this festival.
Rouhaniyet also turns out to be a locomotive for a cultural, tourist and economic dynamic. Its positive repercussions on the local level, but also regionally and nationally, can be felt from one edition to another. Visitors to the region let themselves be seized not only by the splendor of nature and the energy of a particular land, but also by the intangible heritage that abounds in each plot. Tales, legends, songs, rhythms, music, culinary art and ancestral traditions are elements that slip implicitly into a global program, largely musical.
Since its creation, Rouhaniyet has welcomed approximately 30,000 spectators, of all ages, of which 5% are foreign tourists, this number continues to increase from one edition to another under the effect of notoriety. And at each edition, spiritual music troupes and artists from the Sufi world are invited from several countries, giving the festival its international dimension.
Beyond the shows, before and after the musical evenings, on the outskirts of the Grand Podium, a series of activities take place that encourage the public to take ownership of the event: colloquia led by great speakers.
The open-air theater will house spiritual performances for the general public (2,000 seats). Every evening, from 6:00 p.m., great shows by internationally renowned groups will perform concerts of traditional and spiritual music.
Dar El Ouedi, Medina of Nefta will be reserved for Sufi shows with a capacity of 300 places.
Every evening at dusk in the magnificent traditional house Dar El Ouedi, performances by Sufi artists, ensembles from Syria, Morocco, Iran and Egypt are offered for a moment of ecstasy. Without forgetting the shows open to the general public, the shows in the streets and large squares.
The Sufi culture of Jerid sublimated
With this festival, the organizers wish to promote and highlight the Sufi culture of Jerid. The Tunisian south is indeed the cradle and the epicenter of a spiritual current several hundred years old and yet still alive. Local and traditional Nefta troupes open the festivities in the late afternoon and early evening, strolling through town to bring the public to the concert stage.
Every afternoon, the main brotherhoods with their zawiya are visited by festival-goers with on-site conferences on the history of the holy men and women of the region, the related Sufi manifestations with the traditions during the great celebrations.
Cultures and traditions
The other aspects of the oasis culture are not to be outdone since the art of living, crafts and gastronomy are at the heart of the animation of Nefta throughout the duration of the Festival: Markets, Workshops, Tastings, Village craftsmen…
The association of the International Sufi Music Festival of Nefta is a cultural association founded on May 10, 2016 with the objective of promoting the Sufi cultural heritage and participating in the development of tourism in the Jerid region through the annual organization of a festival International of Mystical and Sufi Music.
The concept Rouhaniyet Nefta wants to be an international event of the Mystical Arts following the example of the biggest festivals of the kind; Konya Mystic Music Festival, Sacred Music Festival of Fez, the “Sacred Days” of Strasbourg and Madrid Mantras Festival…