x Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 26 July 2017

Music festivals in Morocco

Music Essaouira isn't the only Moroccan city to host a music festival. Here are six others.

The medina and beautiful riads of Fez come alive with a programme of international jazz, featuring a range of artists and music to represent the full range of world jazz and its history, with groups from Africa, the Middle East, Asia and Europe.

A classical music festival based in the Dar Souiri, one of the indoor venues also used for the Gnawa festival. This year's programme included Voces Inimae performing Schubert lieder, and Quatuor Michelangelo performing Beethoven quartets, all in stunningly beautiful settings.

This festival of sacred music from around the world began following the first Gulf War, in a bid to foster intercultural understanding within the walls of one of the world's greatest cities. This year's programme ranged from Jessye Norman to Tartit via Bach cantatas.

Timitar celebrates and opens up the Amazigh Berber culture to other world cultures, and a range of the world's best known artists appeared this year: Youssou N'Dour, Alpha Blondy, Cheb Khaled, Rokia Traoré, Salif Keita. The mighty Berber band Oudaden delivered the closing set.

Deep in the heart of Morocco, two Berber tribes meet on a verdant plateau in the High Atlas surrounding Imilchil and Ouarsasate, for a festival of music, crafts and farmers' produce. You travel from Marrakech on an eight-day trek taking in the festival as well as the spectacular terrain.

The 10th International Urban Music Festival is contemporary Morocco's biggest gathering of the hip-hop, electro, rock, metal and fusion clans, with acts from Europe and the US as well as Morocco's best young groups, such as Hoba Hoba Spirit and the super-sized rapper Bigg.