Flower World - Mundo Florido, vol. 1

Music Archaeology of the Americas - Arqueomusicología de las Américas

Ritual Dance and Music in Ancient Maya Society

Matthew Looper

Among the ancient Maya, dance was an essential component of many rituals. Dance performances were complex events, combining body movement with song, instrumental music, and even comedy. Through these performances, the sacred world was visualized and dancers acquired supernatural powers. In addition to a religious function, dance had an important social role, particularly for men. Elites employed dance to express political relationships such as alliance and subordination as well as dynastic succession.

Entre los mayas antiguos la danza era un elemento esencial de muchos rituales. Las representaciones danzarias eran eventos complejos que combinaban el movimiento corporal con el canto, la música instrumental y hasta la comedia. Por medio de esas danzas se visualizó el mundo sagrado y los danzantes adquirían poderes sobrenaturales. Aparte de su función religiosa la danza tenía un importante papel social, particularmente para los hombres. Las élites se servían de ella para expresar relaciones políticas como por ejemplo la alianza, la subordinación y también la sucesión dinástica.

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