The Rachidia

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The Rachidia is an artistic and cultural association specialized in Tunisian music. It was created on 3 November 1934 by the intellectual, political and artistic elite led by Mustapha Sfar [fr], Sheikh el Medina of Tunis at that period.[1]

concert of 27 February 2009 of The Rachidia orchestra

The institute's orchestra, ran by Fethi Zghonda, is renowned in Tunisia and other parts of the Maghreb. The association is officially called Association of the Rachidi Institute of Tunisian Music. It is the first musical institution created in Tunisia and one of the oldest ones of Arabic music.


The Rachidia name was chosen in reference to Muhammad I ar-Rashid, third ruler of the Husainid Dynasty. The latter was initiated to music by his mother, an Italian aristocrat.[2] A poet and passionate about music, he played the oud and violin. He was also interested in music, Andalusian songs and worked towards enriching the Tunisian music through Turkish music,[1] particularly in terms of rules and rhythms of nūbāt. This sovereign established a music school at the beylical palace of Le Bardo that was maintained under the rule of his successors.[1]


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