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Ballet folklorique de Bolivie « Manuel ACOSTA »

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Country of the Aymara Indians, province of the Inca Empire, Bolivia became a Spanish colony after the conquest of Pizarro and gained its independence in 1825.


Its geography is organized on parallel lines from east to west, the first being volcanic and dominated by high peaks. It is succeeded by a massive high plateau, known as the Altiplano, where we find a few islets, either of salt or of arable land, and in which lies Lake Titicaca, considered the birthplace of the Bolivian people and where an extraordinary pantheon of protective gods of the Aymara populations. The last part of this complex geography is that known as the Llanos, with a hot and humid climate which goes down to the foot of the Amazon and merges there. It is also the only country in South America that does not have access to the sea.


It all forms a stunning assemblage of forests, eternal snow, volcanoes and salt deserts. Lands of fire and water towers where the Indian man was able to cultivate terraces at high altitude and the white man built the most dizzying railways in the world.


Christianized by missionaries, the Indians of the Andes were able to graft rites onto Catholic worship that respond to their deep beliefs and express their desire for independence. In certain villages in Bolivia, on the occasion of God's Day, men adorn themselves with the plumage of the condor and thus appropriate its mythical strength. In Indian communities, “Pachamama”, mother earth, is considered a living being to whom gifts should be given to attract her good graces. Bolivians are naturally hospitable and despite the difficulties of life in this part of the world, they are all ready to extend their arms and welcome those who come to them to share soups, herbal teas and broths or even a party popular.


In terms of musical culture, the armadillo's shell has become a musical instrument, the flutes run out of steam out of time, the drums beat balefully. Sentimental, modest or protesting, the songs chronicle men. They try to give shape to their destiny. As for the dances, they offer a double spectacle. A violence which reflects the always harsh living conditions of a population caught between the Catholic faith inherited from the Spanish and the multiple recourses to passing saints, and a gentleness which underlines that nothing is hopeless, that poetry can survive, that love is a source of comfort for the dancers and musicians of Bolivia.


And in the night which turns purple with the sunset, the “diablada” will continue to play its music, testimonies of a people whose origins are lost in the mists of time.             

Here is a people carried by the wings of a king bird. Here are the sons of the wind and the children of the sun.         

Here is the Bolivian Folkloric Ballet “Manuel ACOSTA”.

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