Guelaguetza Festival

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Country and Region MexicoOaxaca
Type of Festival Dance, Drama, Music
Location of Festival Oaxaca, Oaxaca, Mexico
Festival Description

A Zapotec word indicating an offering, Guelaguetza was the term used to describe the ceremony as a celebration held each year to propitiate the gods in return for sufficient rain and a bountiful harvest. The “official” Guelaguetza is now organized and promoted by the state. At dawn on the Monday on the Hill people begin walking up to the auditorium.
The pageantry, music and breathtaking beauty, enlivened by the scrabbling to catch one of the pineapples from the Papaloapan, a sombrero de palma from the Mixteca, mezcal from Ejutla or any of the varied gifts of their region thrown into the audience by members of each delegation. It is difficult to describe the beauty of this spectacle—the music, the color, the enthusiasm of the participants reflecting out into the audience who remain enthralled until the final Danza de la Pluma. You can see the dances performed in other places and other times in Oaxaca and many are quite stunning, but nothing compares to being in this place at this time taking part in the tradition of the Guelaguetza. The festival takes place on the last two Mondays in July.

Festival Dates July 25 - August 1, 2011
Festival Links

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