Tumaini Group menneskepyramide i Olavshallen, 2008
From performance in Olavshallen, 2008

Tumaini Group started their work with the performance Barabaig! i January 2003, when they visited the famous musician, since deceased, Hukwe Zawose and his music and dance ensemble Chibite in Bagamoyo in Tanzania. This show includes dances from the North of Tanzania as well as from the rest of the country.

In the winter of 2004 Tumaini Group set out on our most exciting tour so far: A Norwegian winter adventure, 27 performances in all major towns in Southern Norway: Oslo, Bergen, Kristiansand and Trondheim. Nearly 5000 people saw our spectacular show BARABAIG. And the Tumaini members experienced snow and temperatures below zero for the first time! In 2005 and 2008, the group again toured Norway, with great success.

Tumaini Group also made a tour in 2004 in the north of Tanzania supported by the MFUKO foundation.

The opening night of the 2004 tour took place in Olav's Hall inTrondheim, Norway. From the very start the Tumaini dancers and acrobats created an exciting rapport with their audience. Not least the two Juma's, 7 and 8 years old, who performed like they never had done anything else! The stimulating atmosphere of the rehearsal process and the cooperation between the group members and their Norwegian stage director Elin Hassel Iversen, resulted in giving audiences a thrilling performance. As did the cooperation between stage director and choreographer Robert Ngoroma, who earlier has been working with Hukwe Zawose's group Chibite.

The show Barabaig! is based on Tanzanian theatre, dance traditions, acrobatics, song, music and dialogue. The topic is HIV/AIDS.

One day the two boys Soroji and Bargheida are playing in the village, they encounter a spirit who tells them that someone in their family will die. In the course of their investigation of the meaning of this strange incident, they encounter different people who through the medium of dance, song and acrobatics tell them how to deal with this mysterious disease, AIDS. The topic of this performance is a grave matter, but at the same time the performance takes the audience through a spectacular and exciting journey through Tanzanian village life in the year 2008.

Tumaini Group human pyramid in Olavshallen, 2008
From performance in Olavshallen, 2008

Barabaig! is performed in Norway with dialogues in English. Dances and rituals will be performed in the tribal languages of their origin. The message of the performance is that life is a wonderful gift, but that one must protect oneself against dangers and risks to survive. The show is designed in such a way that it can be performed both in Tanzania and in Norway. The success of Tumaini Group in Norway has contributed to an increase in the fame and interest in this group and Barabaig! also in Tanzania.


The AIDS epidemic has reached even the remote areas of the Mbulu District in the Manyara Region, which is populated by the nomadic tribe the Barabaigs. This tribe consists of about 30 000 people who live a very traditional lifestyle based around cattle herding. Their way of life has changed very little over the last 2-300 years. Few Barabaigs can read or write, polygamy is practiced, and they are extremely sceptical to any directives issued from the government, which in the past has deprived them of some of their best grazing lands. It is not difficult to see that the AIDS epidemic could have catastrophic consequences for the Barabaig people.

Tumaini Group shows a unique ability to communicate with audiences in all age groups with their performance Barabaig!. Barabaig! is not a sad show, in spite of its subject matter being HIV/AIDS. 15 acrobats and dancers, from 10 to 39 years old, deliver a performance that is a celebration of life. Barabaig! is a family show that is suitable for anyone from 6 to 90 years old.