7 junio, 2024

The 6 Most Famous Dances and Typical Dances of Guanajuato

The dances and typical dances of Guanajuato, as a cultural manifestation, have been little studied. It is believed that the industrialization process of this Mexican state has caused the preservation of its intangible cultural heritage to be neglected.

In fact, for several years now voices have been raised warning about the danger of some of these dances disappearing. An example of this is the Dance of the Waxes in Salamanca or that of the Old Men in Comonfort.

Thus, both public and private institutions have been making efforts to rescue many of these musical traditions.

Brief description of some typical dances and dances of Guanajuato

bull dance

The bull dance is perhaps one of the most representative among all the typical dances and dances of Guanajuato.

In this way, many affirm that this dance arrived in the León municipality in the mid-19th century from the Silao and Romita municipalities of Guanajuato.

It is a representation in which several characters such as the little horse, the mule, the drunkard and others try to knock down the main character, the little bull. The music that accompanies it is performed with drum and flute.

Dance of Concheros

Among the typical dances and dances of Guanajuato is the dance of concheros. The main instrument of the music that accompanies this dance, the mandolin, is made from armadillo shells.

That’s where its name comes from. This dance originated in the north center of the Mexican nation (Guanajuato and Querétaro). The original version of this pre-Hispanic indigenous manifestation disappeared more than a century ago.

Currently, there is variety and breadth in the steps of this dance. As for the clothing, it resembles the clothing of the pre-Columbian tribes, including a very colorful bird feather headdress.

Dance of the Paloteros

Another of the typical dances and dances of Guanajuato is the dance of the paloteros (other common names are palo or paloteo).

This is practiced especially in the municipalities of Yuriria and Uriangato, and also dates from indigenous times.. Specifically, it is believed that it was part of the preparation ritual of the Tarascans to defend their territory from Chichimeca incursions.

As for its name, it is due to the basic element of the participants of this dance: a stick made of cat’s claw. This emits a characteristic sound when colliding with each other.

Dance of the Rattles

This dance is performed in various municipalities of the state such as Victoria de Cortazar, San Nicolás de los Agustinos, Acámbaro, among others.

However, there are differences in the music used in its performance. For example, towards the south it is interpreted with violin and drums, while in Yuriria only the violin is used. Also, in the south they dance to banda music and without the typical hat.

This dance dates back to pre-colonial times. However, after the conquest it took elements of Catholicism.

Chichimecas and French dance

The dance of Chichimecas and French belongs to the so-called dances of the conquest. In general, they carry out the representation of the hard battles between the native peoples and the conquerors.

This dance has different versions in the municipalities where it is practiced. Some of these municipalities are Celaya, San Miguel de Allende and San Luis de la Paz.

Dance of the Bakers

Religious dance popularly danced in the festival of San Nicolás, the patron saint of miners, celebrated on September 14. The custom is born from a tradition in some municipalities of Guanajuato of bringing bread to the miners at the end of their workday.

The dance is made up of a series of danced songs with a choreography that stages this tradition among bakers and miners.

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