Hispanic Heritage Month Celebrates Culture

By Lucia Santaolalla, Photographer

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  • The special guests in one of the bailes folklóricos. They danced three times throughout the event.

  • The girls at their end pose. They changed dresses about five times.

  • One of the groups dancing Baile Folklorico Mexicano. The guys used machetes, typical Mexican knives.

  • The Abuelita was a girl of one of the groups dressed as an old woman that was there to entertain the little kids.

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Hispanic Heritage Month, which takes place from Sept. 15 to Oct. 15 is a month in which Hispanic and Latino Americans are recognized for their contributions and their important presence in the United States. 

Originally, this celebration was only one week long, but it has since expanded to a full month. It’s celebration dates back to 1968.

On October 5, four different Hispanic dance groups joined together at Alma Mexicana Ballet Folklorico to perform diverse Mexican dances in the RRISD Performing Arts Center. The groups included the  Alma Mexicana Ballet Folklorico, Guzman Ballet Folklorico, Roundrock Ballet Folklorico and Ballet Folklorico Orgullo Mexicano. Baile Folklorico is a term used for the traditional Mexican dances that draw upon characteristics of classic ballet, such as the exaggerated movements and carefully choreographed dances. This type of dance originally hails from Africa and Europe.

The groups danced to emphasized the regional culture, and used different clothes that represented the traditional costumes of Mexico. The show lasted two hours with fifteen minutes of intermission in between acts. 

Irini Skevofilax ’22 danced with the company of Guzman Ballet Folklorico. For her, being part of this group keeps her connected with her Hispanic heritage. 

“The group is very tightened in and everyone speaks Spanish and we have dinner together sometimes,” Skevofilax said. “ Through that, I’m able to make friends that are Mexican as well.”

This dances represented the culture of Mexico and its roots, and it taught people from different parts of the world about the importance of dance to them.