HAKAYA BAND – Historical Overview

Hakaya in Arabic Language means folkloric tales. Hakaya members chose this name in 1994 to represent themselves as a Palestinian folk dancing and singing group. Through movement and song stories are told. These stories represent the Palestinian’s life style from an ancient time until now.

Dabka is the traditional dancing style of Palestinians people, danced at celebrations and festivals. From the early beginning at Ghirass Cultural Center, Hakaya group was established, the focus has been on Palestinian folklore. The costumes, songs, music and movements come from the Palestinian heritage that Ghirass works hard to preserve and teach it to its members. This focus is due to Ghirass’s belief that folklore is important in the process of the Palestinian nation-building. Traditional Palestinian folk (singing and dancing) is used for both amateur social settings and stage performance. Students learn the steps by name, the corresponding rhythms, the leadership roles and the attitudes to Palestinian Culture.

Since the foundation of Ghirass Cultural Center1994, Hundreds of children have graduated from Ghirass Center’s Dabka courses. The Dabka group, which performs frequently, started as a result of the early courses. Since 2000 the Dabka group has been trained by the first and the second generations of children who were members in the earlier Dabka groups.

In 2012, Hakaya included (as usual) three groups with the same name, Hakaya – Hakaya for the elder children, between 13 to 16 years old. There are 14 members, boys and girls. These children represent the seventh generation of children in Ghirass. – Hakaya for younger children, boys and girls, their age is 10-13 years old. They represent the sixth generation. – Hakaya singing group, girls aged 10-14 years old.

Hakaya groups have taken part in many local festivals and occasions. Through the cultural exchange program they made many visits to different countries such as England in 1998, 2002,2005,2007,2009 and 2012, 2014 and to Norway in1999, 2001, 2003, 2006, 2009, 2013 and to France in 2000. seven different groups of Hakaya shared in these international visits.

The Hakaya groups are considered among the best in Bethlehem area; they are highly professional and motivated, and have been rated number one in many national and local competitions. The Hakaya group’s costume is the traditional dress for the Bethlehem area.

THE MAIN ACTIVITIES

Related subject See Hakaya generations See images of Hakaya trip to England, 2007

Hakaya Gallery

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