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  SRI LANKA MALAY ASSOCIATION
PERSATUAN MELAYU SRI LANKA
ESTD. 1922
Handicrafts were introduced to the Island by the Malays. Schweitzer states that:  “…The Malays made all sorts of lovely baskets from rattan.” – (Christian David,  1958, p. 7), and adds “….the original cane workers were Malays who plied their  trade in Slave Island. They were expert builders. The ‘Creeses’ were turned out by  Malay and Javanese craftsmen and their gold-smiths, also produced lovely filigree  work on a solid background for decoration of pendants, bracelets, ear studs and  rings. The embroidery turned out by their women folk was very popular among the  Sinhalese women. The men were also expert painters woodcarvers and   craftsmen who turned out their own musical instruments such as the Gamelan, violins, drums, etc., They were fond of song,  music and dance. They composed their own poems (Stairs), pantuns and songs. Their women were adept at dancing –  ‘Tari Payong” (Umbrella dance), ‘Tari Chinta Sayang’ (Dance of love), ‘Ronggeng’ (Dance to the lilt of Portuguese  Kafringga) etc., to the accompaniment of the ‘gamelan’, ‘rabana’, violin and cymbals”.  As much as they were fond of song, music and dance they were also staunch devotees of their faith – Islam.