Arriba folklorico music and dance of Mexico

14- Oaxaca - Jarabe Mixteco and La Gelaguetza

Aug. 18, 2009

In this episode of Arriba! Folklorico Music and Dance of Mexico, we travel to the South of Mexico on the Pacific waters, stretching along the coast to the northern part of the Isthmus of Tehuantepec. The state of Oaxaca has one of the largest populations of native indigenous tribes, or "indios" as the Latin Americans call them.

Of the seven major cultures and areas of Oaxaca, we focus on 2: the Zapotecas and the Mixtecos.

In this episode, the music from the Jarabe Mixteco opens the show.

We also discuss the fiesta that takes place in July which is known as La Gelaguetza, or the "fiesta de la Sierra."
In the capital city of Oaxaca itself, we describe one of the main indigenous dances, DANZA DE LA PLUMA.

Also, during the festivities of La Gelaguetza, the food is rich--in particular, the famed MOLE NEGRO Oaxaqueno.

In addition to the mention of the archaeological zones in the region--such as Mitla and Monte Alban--the episode describes the courtship dance of the JARABE MIXTECO, with its stanzas and tableaus for the CHASE, the TORITO and the conquest of the man over woman to symbolize the move from suitor to marriage partner. Especially symbolic is the rose that the lady carries by the stem in her teeth, and which the man grabs from her with his teeth to symbolize the transition from enagement to marriage.

The episode ends with the ending musical score of the JARABE MIXTECO. It is usually played by big brass bands during the festivities of La Gelaguetza, but here, we listen to a version performed by mariachis.

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