Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Wedding Dances - Zambia

Edited by Azizi Powell

This post showcases selected videos of dances that are performed in Zambia during weddings & wedding receptions. These videos are presented for their historical, folkloric, and aesthetic value.

My thanks to those who produced and uploaded those videos. Congratulations to the couples, and best wishes to all who participated in these weddings!

(These videos are presenting in no ranking order.)

Video #1: Zambia Wedding Dancing

Uploaded by daviddamberger on Jul 4, 2009

One of my favorite parts about Zambia weddings are that the wedding party, the flower girl, the knife boys and pretty much anyone else involved in the wedding enters into the room dancing."
I'm familiar with the role of "flower girls" from American weddings, but was unfamiliar with the role of "knife boys". Here's some information about "knife boys" that I found at!/2011/11/grs-wedding.html
Lena & Kennedy’s Wedding
"For the cutting of the cake, it’s tradition here for a little boy to be the “Knife boy” who dances down the rows while carrying the knife that would be used to cut the wedding cake."
The blogger continues describing that wedding & reception:
"The little boy, who I never got the name of lively danced towards Lena and Kennedy, all the way as we put kwachas in his vest suit for him to keep. Later on we all danced together, even all the Americans at the wedding to join in so it was a Muzungu dance party at one point."
"Kwacha" is Zambian money and "mzungu" is a Bantu language word "foreigners" (from the first White explorers, literally "people who wander around aimlessly"

[In the blog quote above, the bride in the particular wedding was American and the groom was Zambian.]

Video #2: Zambia Wedding Dance 3 - Knife Boys and Flower Girls

Uploaded by daviddamberger on Jul 4, 2009

Video #3: Becca Zambia - Wedding - Dance 3 - The Junior Groomsmen and Bridesmaids.m4v

Uploaded by RandyatWayne on Jan 8, 2010

Video #4: Wedding exit dance

Uploaded by Samuellyc on Oct 19, 2011

Bevis and Mutale's exit dance at their incredible wedding.
Here's a comment from that video's viewer comment thread:
"Beautiful wedding and exciting dancing. Zambian weddings...always exciting"
-Cholandaka; 2012

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  1. they are no set dances, the dances are chereographed diffrently at every wedding and just performed in an african style with african music (almost always rumba or music from the ivroian cost like in all those videos). knife girls are more common than knife boys, knife boys are rare, its mostly girls who do it. i am a zambian. just correcting you

  2. Thanks, Anonymous.

    I appreciate your comment. Until I happened on these videos, I had never heard of "knife girls" or "knife boys".

    One great thing about the internet is that it helps people learn about other cultures as well as about their own culture.

    Best wishes,