- Takes note that Zambia has nominated Kalela dance (No. 01698) for inscription on the Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity:
The Kalela dance originated during colonial times in the Luapula Province of Zambia. It was adopted by mine workers and used for entertainment at the Chief's Palace during traditional ceremonies, funerals, harvest celebrations and other important occasions. Kalela is a kind of dance drill formation in which the dancers form two or three lines, moving forwards and backwards as they sing along to the drumbeat. There is a lead singer, along with others who join in to support. Lead dancers also guide the formation and dance around the drums, which are placed at the centre. There are two big drums and one small drum, typically played by men. The knowledge and skills of the Kalela dance are primarily transmitted to the public and to younger generations through song and poetry and through observation and participation during public performances. However, some groups may organize formal lessons led by expert drummers to recruit new musicians, as drummers are sometimes scarce. Public performances are included in many events, such as traditional ceremonies, public and state functions, international and national celebrations, weddings and funerals.
- Considers that, from the information included in the file, the nomination satisfies the following criteria for inscription on the Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity:
R.1: The Kalela Dance has become a performance for entertainment at the Chief's Palace, during traditional ceremonies, funerals, harvest celebrations and other important occasions. The songs depict different aspects of life, such as fishing, harvest, working the fields, social occasions or, occasionally, modern life. The dance is performed by men, women and children, either formally or informally. The knowledge and skills of the Kalela Dance are transmitted in a number of ways, such as through public performances, oral expressions in songs and poetry, dance drills and dance styles, the playing of the drum and many other verbal and non-verbal expressions and communications. The element is transmitted to the public and younger generations through observation. The Kalela Dance has become a symbol of cultural identity by the practising dancers and communities. The Kalela dance and songs are also used as a means of conveying social commentary on what is happening in the community, and of teaching morals to the community and particularly youth.
R.4: The file explains that the participation of communities and individuals in all stages of preparing the nomination took place through meetings that included the practitioners of the element. Practitioners were also involved in updating and preparing the inventory and the nomination form. Groups, group leaders and community members with knowledge and experience of the element were involved in the updating and preparation of the inventory and the nomination form. The file includes a set of consent letters with details about the submitting individuals. However, a large number of the letters were based on standardized forms, which are not preferable when demonstrating the free and informed consent of communities, groups and individuals. There are no customary practices that prevent access to the element, as Kalela is a social dance available to anyone who wants to join.
R.5: The element was included in the Zambia National Inventory in December 2017. The inventory is maintained by several organizations, including the Ministry of Tourism and Arts and the Zambia National Commission for UNESCO. The element was identified for inclusion on the national inventory through consultation with bearers and communities concerned. In terms of updating, the inventory is updated at a regular interval.
- Further considers that, from the information included in the file and the information provided by the submitting State Party through the dialogue process, and based on the information provided by the State Party to the Committee at its present session, the nomination satisfies the following criteria for inscription on the Representative List of Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity:
R.2: The file explains that inscription would contribute to creating more dance groups and developing the festival at the local level. At the national level, it will motivate other groups in several parts of the country to create new dance groups, and increase the visibility of the dance in other national festivals. At the international level, the inscription will enhance the creative state of the dance in all its components. The nomination file adequately explains how the inscription will contribute to the visibility and raising awareness of intangible cultural heritage in general. In addition, the file sufficiently explains how dialogue between communities and the respect for cultural diversity will be enhanced through an inscription.
R.3: The past, current and future safeguarding measures such as the Kalela Dance Festival and Samfya Arts Festival as community initiatives are among the efforts by the community to safeguard the element. The State Party has safeguarded the element, by training personnel to give support to practitioners and custodians of the element, and providing capacity building efforts in various provinces. In addition, the State Party has proposed a number of safeguarding measures for the element, including technical and financial support for hosting of the Kalela dance festivals, implementing cultural policies and related legislations, capacity building workshops for policy makers, etc. The State Party's safeguarding efforts are clearly stated in the file and the State party explained theinvolvement of the communities in planning and implementing the proposed safeguarding efforts such as the community-initiated festivals as mentioned above.
- Decides to inscribe Kalela Dance on the Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity;
- Reminds the State Party of the importance of ensuring the widest possible participation of the communities concerned in planning and implementing safeguarding measures and in the inventorying process;
- Encourages the State Party, when submitting nomination files in the future, to avoid standardized letters of consent.