Saroba

Antanosy ethinic groupe

Antananarivo, Madagascar

Saroba is a four piece band of one lead singer & Kabosy player, two Atranatrana (Malagasy wood xylophone) players and one percussionist. Singing in Antanosy language, dress in traditional clothing, their performances showcase Antanosy's uplifting music and dance.

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Back in May 2016 in Madagascar...

After few right (and wrong) turns in the wild Antananarivo daytime market, followed by few roosters and goats, a tiny laneway lead us to this two story colonial mud house. 

We came for the Atranatrana, an early form of xylophone which are believed to have come across the Indian ocean with the original Indonesian settlers. It is still being played and could be found throughout the island. The earliest of these is played uniquely by a pair of women, one of whom sits with her legs outstretched together and the bars of the xylophone resting across her legs rather than on a separate resonator box. Each woman strikes the Atranatrana with a pair of sticks, one keeping the beat while the second plays a melody.

Saroba don't play Atranatrana on legs anymore, but instead, they combine it with kabosy, singing, dancing and other percussions. An uplifting journey to Antanosy's country, the south coast of Madagascar.

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