Fiesta de la Virgen en El Carmen, Chincha, Peru
In El Carmen you get Afro-Peruvian music and dance. The black presence in this area remains strong today. The town of El Carmen in Chincha is a community where African traditions are complemented by indigenous practices to form unique cultural and artistic expressions.
The hatajos were originally composed only of boys and men but some now include girls. They dance accompanied by a violin which is played by the group’s leader. In addition to the violin, the dancers themselves have bells or sometimes, a string of bells. The traditional Afro-Peruvian form of fancy footwork, called zapateo, is also an integral part of the dancing. It reminds me very much of our Schuhplattler in Bavaria. Very funny! Plus the members of the group often sing as they dance. Taken together, the violin, bells, footwork and singing provide an ample musical accompaniment.
This is the place where the music instrument cajon comes from! No, it does not come from Spain, it comes right from this place. One theory posits that slaves simply used boxes as musical instruments to combat contemporary Spanish colonial bans on music in predominantly African areas; In this way, cajones could easily be disguised as seats or stools, thus avoiding identification as musical instruments.
Everyone there was affected by the earthquake.
Tags: Afro-Peruvians, comunidad negra del Perú, El Carmen de Chincha, Festival of the Virgin of Carmen, Fiesta de la Virgen, hatajo de negritos, Ica, Peru, violin music, zapateo
© 2011 Ingrid Firmhofer Photography