The mask of Banda / Le masque Banda

On Friday, the 3rd of April 2015 at five o’clock in the afternoon, tenth grade students from LAC observed the Dance of Banda organized by a group of Nalu people from the village of Kabata, which is situated 10 km away from Kamsar.

Griot and villagers, Kabata /Griote et villageois, Kabata
Griot and villagers, Kabata /Griote et villageois, Kabata

The BANDA is a huge mask which is 1,50 meters tall and 2 meters wide. The mask consists of diverse shapes pilled all together, and of a beautiful combination of vibrant colors. The BANDA has three parts: the front which is the mouth of a caiman, the middle which is the horns of antelopes, the end part is a big triangular nose, eyes that pop out of the wood, and finally on its forehead are animalistic looking forms.

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For the Nalu people of Guinea, the BANDA is a mask that represents perfectly their environment composed of marine and terrestrial faun: snakes, caimans, chameleons, antelopes, and birds. To them these entities symbolize their natural forces (bravery, endurance, adaptation,) and also their supernatural abilities (genies of water, land, and sky).

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