Music and dance, merged in a single expression, are the most representative manifestations of a nation’s culture. Ecuador, with contrasting geographic characteristics of impressive beauty, is equally diverse in its ethnic and cultural background. Jacchigua Folklore Ballet is a mirror that reflects, in fascinating choreographies, the traditions and customs, the joys, myths and legends of a magic, yet real and profound Ecuador.
Jacchigua is a subtle word in Kichwa the lingua franca of the Inca Empire an expression of satisfaction to celebrate the miracle of the harvest.
Jacchigua is the result of many years of dedicated and thorough research into the roots of the most authentic popular culture of Ecuador. Its director, Rafael Camino, has spent much of his life among the Andean communities of Ecuador, studying their arts and drawing on the tales that form the mythology of the region. Hundreds of costumes are the result of Camino’s research into the dyes, textures and designs used in past centuries, most of which might well have been lost but for his work.
The resulting 2-hour show is a vibrant explosion of colors, sounds and movement, integrated in complex ways that provide intellectual as well as visual impact.
Some dances are based upon the traditional celebrations of a particular community such as the Saraguros, of Inca origin, who were forcibly resettled centuries ago in what is now Ecuador. Others seek to present the not always happy confluence of indigenous and imposed cultures. Still others celebrate ancient rituals, such as the Dance of Inti-Raymi (the Sun God), the feminine expressions of the Indian women in Poem to Life, the Deer Hunt and the Haya Huma, embodied by the strongest and bravest man, who, wearing a colorful two-faced mask, leads his people in the ceremonial dance.
Performances are given Wednesdays at 7:30 pm. at Teatro Casa de la Cultura. Metropolitan Touring provides roundtrip motorcoach transportation between major hotels and the theater. Don’t miss it!