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FANTASIA-SAHRAOUI MOROCCO

FANTASIA-SAHRAOUI MOROCCO (57 photos) Send this reportage Send this reportage
Fantasia is a traditional equestrian performance practiced during cultural festivals in Morocco,and occurs traditionally to close up berber wedding celebration in Maghreb. Fantasia is an imported name, the actual traditional term used is "Game of gunpowder".
© C. Béné./TheReportage.com
Categories: Geography, Human & Ethnology, Travel, Horse, Special Cultural event, Show, Spring
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Fantasia is a traditional equestrian performance practiced during cultural festivals in Morocco,and occurs traditionally to close up berber wedding celebration in Maghreb. Fantasia is an imported name, the actual traditional term used is "Game of gunpowder".

It consists of a group of horse riders, wearing traditional clothes and charging along a straight path at the same speed so as to form a line, at the end of the ride (about a two hundred meters) all riders fire in the sky using old gunpowder guns. The difficulty of the performance is synchronization during the acceleration and specially during firing so that one single shot is heard. The horse is referred to as fantasia horse and is of type barb. Gunpowder is called 'Baroud' and traditional gun 'moukahla', hence the name "la3b el baroud" or "game of gunpowder".

The performance is inspired from historical wartime attacks of berber and desert knights. Nowadays, Fantasia is considered as a cultural art and a form of martial art; it also symbolizes a strong relationships between the man and the horse, as well as an attachment to tradition.

Each region in Morocco has one or several fantasia groups, called serba, totalling thousands of horse riders nationwide. Performances are usually during local seasonal, cultural or religious festivals, also called moussem ('season' in Arabic). Some show-based restaurant, offer a fantasia show among others in their menu.