October 15, 2013

0841 CHILE - La Cueca

By Decree No. 23 published in the Official Journal on 18 September 1979, cueca became the national dance of Chile. Among other arguments, the main was that within the wide range of Chilean folk dances, this had the highest level of diffusion and historical significance. Their presence can be recognized throughout the country, varying the choreographic and musical forms as the geographical area in which it is interpreted, but always keeping a common pattern that makes it a dance unique and differentiated. It has had two predominant functions: first, entertainment, bailándose in boarding and parties with great fanfare, secondly, the documentary function, as it acts as a transmitter of the oral tradition of popular singers voice.

Cueca is actually a family of musical styles and associated dances encountered not only în Chile, but also in Argentina, Bolivia and Peru. There are several theories about its origin and its arrival in Chile, however, has failed to reach a consensus on its relationship with the zamacueca (a Peruan variation of the Spanish Fandango dancing, with criollo and African influences) and Arabo-Andalusian history. From musical point of view it has a formal scheme, with a repeated section that ends forming a musical fragment of 52 bars, which is called the foot, with a duration of one minute and twenty seconds (usually a cueca has three feet). His lyrical structure is composed of two stanzas and a conclusion, the verses rhyming in pairs. Currently, the cueca is mainly danced in the countryside, and performed throughout Chile each year during the national holidays in September. Dancing competitions of cueca are popular around that time of year.

The clothing worn during the cueca dance is very traditional Chilean clothes. The men wear the huaso's hat (chupalla), shirts, flannel poncho (chamanto), riding pants and boots, short jacket, riding boots, and spurs. The women wear flowered dresses. The dance of the cueca is done with a sense of the rooster and the chicken. The man approaches the woman and offers his arm, then the women accompanies him and they walk around the room. They then face each other and hold their handkerchief in the air, and begin to dance. They never touch, but still maintain contact through facial expressions and movements.

About the stamps
The first two stamps are part of the series, depicting British Arch and Monument to the Heroes of Iquique, belongs to the Valparaíso, Patrimonio de la Humanidad, about which I wrote here. The last one is part of a very special series illustrating paintings by Roberto Matta, about which I wrote here.

Cueca - Wikipedia
La cueca - Memoria chilena, Biblioteca National de Chile

Sender: Hernán (direct swap)
sent from Santiago (Chile), on 30.07.2013

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