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The 2018 archive

Bnt Al Masarwa

Béchar / Created in 2018

Tickets' holders for Daughter of the Egyptians can access the concert Lemma with their ticket, or contact the toicket office on +33(0)4 90 14 14 14 to be reimbursed.

Lemma © Christophe Raynaud de Lage


Located deep in sub-Saharan Algeria, the Saoura reveals its treasures: women come to sing their joys and their struggles, to preserve their culture and music.

Lemma can be translated as a meeting, a gathering. It can also mean glean or harvest. So many meanings for the band created by singer and musician SaoudAsla who, accompanied by women from Western Sahara, has made it her mission to save their cultural heritage. They believe that their oral tradition shouldn't be allowed to disappear, but should instead serve to preserve a culture full of nomadic influences, which means collecting ancestral songs which have been sung and danced throughout the ages. Here, three generations gather and share those songs that give life in the region its rhythm. From diwan to malhoun, from zeffani to gnawi, from hadra to el ferda orhaydous, those musical genres find their strength in songs and rhythms inherited from both slaves of the Sudanese Empire and from Berber and Bedouin tribes. Those women are the voice which bravely speaks of a complex, open culture, with its many influences. The show, made up of successive tableaux, allows them to express their happiness at being together onstage, and describes a struggle for life that must be fought with joy.

Souad Asla
Born in Béchar, within the Saoura (in southwest Algeria), SaoudAslaqui has lived in Paris for 25 years, but often comes back to her roots. A singer and musician, she created in 2015 the Lemma project to protect the cultural legacy of her region. Twelve women aged 20 to 70 breathe new life into a collection of songs they've gathered during musical encounters to then share them during their concerts. Gnawa songs, drums, guembri, dances, and trances, to tell the hybrid history of the desert nomads.


Souad Asla singer, Hasna El Becharia singer,  Zohra Kherabi singer,  Aziza TAHRI singer,  Rabia Boughazi singer, Khedidja Anebi singer, Sabrina Cheddad singer, Fatima Abbi singer

Direction Souad Asla


Production Les Ponts d'Avignon / Là ! C'est de la Musique
Co-production Souad Asla Production, Festival Détours de Babel - Grenoble, Maison de la musique de Nanterre - La Terre est à Nous
With the support de la Sacem pour la 72e édition du Festival d'Avignon
Co-accueil Festival d'Avignon, Là ! C'est de la Musique
In partnership with France Médias Monde

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