“There are very few women maâlems. You can count them on the fingers of one hand.” Traditionally, women in the Gnaoua community have played roles in the lila, the all-night musical rituals, providing support to the male musicians.
Born in Essaouira, Ennaira defied the conventional path and taught herself to play the guembri, a traditional instrument integral to Gnaoua music. Notably, her parents are not part of the Gnaoua community, emphasizing the universal appeal and transcendent nature of Gnaoua music.
“This music is transcendent. Even if people don’t understand the language, it really brings you into its atmosphere. It’s the guembri that does it all,” Ennaira passionately explained.