Welcome to the Festival Cultura Timor-Leste!
This event, included in the program we have been developing in the State Secretariat and the National Directorate of Culture, aims at marking the 35th anniversary of the first Declaration of Independence of the Democratic Republic of Timor-Leste, which took place on the 28th of November 1975.
We have decided to do it showing the culture of our country in its various expressions – from dances to traditional and European music, from arts and crafts to gastronomy. The culture of Timor-Leste was highly affected during the occupation period and it needs all our support to recover the diversity and wealth of expressions that once had.
The cultural diversity of a country is important in the process of affirming its national identity. Culture may and indeed should be one of the essential instruments towards social peace and harmony between people. From the North to the South, and from the East to the West, culture plays the fundamental role of showing that we can all live in harmony with the differences, learning from others what we do not yet know, and therefore enriching our day-to-day.
This festival is not the first one we organise with such aim. Every year, representatives from all districts and the various ethnolinguistic groups that comprise Timor-Leste gather to share experiences, socialize and show their culture. This year, however, we have decided to invest in an innovative design and to give prominence to a traditional dance that despite regional variations is practiced all over the country: the tebe dahur.
The tebe dahur is a group dance, of ritual and sharing, danced by men and women all across the country, from the seashore plains to the highest mountains of Timor-Leste. Sometimes for hours and hours, men and women dance and sing, welcoming those who arrive or celebrating an important moment in the life of the community.
From 25 to 28 November, come thus watch and dance our tebe dahur, listen to our traditional instruments (some of which are almost extinct), learn with our craftsmen arts that have been practiced for thousands of years, and taste our traditional food, in what we expect will be a truly Culture Fest of Timor-Leste!
State Secretary of Culture
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