5 things you didn’t know about Saudi ardha dance

King Salman performing the ardha dance.

On Tuesday, Saudis will be performing the traditional Najdi ardha dance that is held annually and is patronized by the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud as part of the Kingdom’s National Festival for Heritage and Culture.

The dance begins with a single line of poetry that is repeated with drums beating in the background and swords wielded as part of the national ceremony. Dancers express their joy and pride, re-pledging allegiance to the King.

The Saudi ardha was often associated with military achievements, but nowadays, it is performed during special occasions and celebrations and has become a widespread practice throughout Saudi provinces.

It has become a national folkloric dance.

The Najdi ardha recalls the battles, wars and victories led by the founder of Saudi Arabia, King Abdul Aziz Al Saud. It is a dance that attracted writers and historians because it holds a history of wars and battles led by the Kingdom.

The drums of ardha were used to declare war, the swords were wielded and poetry was recited; these are the defining characteristics of the ardha.

Last Update: 11:40 KSA 14:40 - GMT 11:40