Music and dancing
chromatic marimba, developed in Chiapas as a modification of the Central American diatonic marimba. The diatonic instrument itself evolved from the balafon brought over by African slaves to the Caribbean.
rattles on his lower legs. The rattles are made from the shells of Ayoyote seeds (also called Cabalonga seeds), and produce a sound when the dancer's feet are stamped on the ground. Seed rattles were used widely in pre-hispanic times. Along with drums, they were among the primary percussion instruments. We saw these performers at various times in different places, as you will see later in this posting.
Their ancestors used both types. While these flutes all appear to be made of wood, the pre-hispanic Maya also used reeds, bone, and ceramic materials.
very widespread in the ancient worlds of Europe, the Middle East, and Asia, as well as in North, Central and South America. Pan instruments dating to 4200 BC have been found in Peru. Their use spread along ancient trade routes to the Maya and other Mesoamerican cultures. Ultimately they reached as far north as the Hopewell culture of the Ohio Valley
mural in the Palacio Nacional showing the tianguis (open market place) in the Aztec capital of Tenochtitlán. He based it on the reports of the Conquistadors who observed it in 1520 AD. The scene above bears a striking similarity to the Rivera mural.
The Night Scene
very different views on death than those of modern Western societies. For example, they believed that people who committed suicide or were sacrificed, and women who died in child birth or men who died in battle, were all first in line to go immediately to heaven. For that matter, many of today's Mexicans maintain pre-modern views, as seen in their Day of the Dead fiestas. I believe the performer above may be part of the troupe that put on a spectacular performance of ancient Maya legends at a theatre down the street. Carole and I were both dazzled by it.
And for the kids...
The ever-entertaining practice of people watching