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WAMED Festival 2023 Theme

Pink Marble
Ghazal Insta Tile HR.jpg

Ghazal - The Poetry of Dance

2023 Festival Theme

What is Ghazal?

The term Ghazal is both a noun and a concept or an idea. A ghazal was originally a type of Arabic love poetry which was embraced by medieval Persian poets and then spread across the world. The ghazal has a particular structure (a series of rhyming couplets and a refrain with the same meter for the poetry nerds like me!) and they are usually about romantic love and loss. So the term ghazal has become a poetic expression of both the pain of loss or separation and the beauty of love in spite of that pain. Often a ghazal describes an unattainable, absent, or separated love.


One of the most well-known ghazal poets is Rumi (who was born in the Balkh Province in 1207 C.E.)

An example of one such ghazal:

The sky has never seen such a moon, not even in its dreams,
No water could ever extinguish the fire of its light,


Look at my body, and look at my soul
From his cup of love, my soul is drunk, my body ruined

The tavern keeper became my heart’s companion
Love turned my blood into wine, and burned my heart


We challenge all our teachers and performers to produce content, technique and choreographies that reflect the Ghazal theme.

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