Madera residents who share an ancestry in Oaxaca exposed indigenous traditions — from an engagement to a wedding ceremony — in a play last weekend. The performance was the culmination of years of research and hours of practice by native Oaxacans and their children who wanted to share their culture with Madera.
The “Fandango Zapoteco: A theater from the people for the people,” was performed in Spanish and included some Zapotec, the language spoken by the indigenous people of southwestern Mexico, mostly in the state of Oaxaca. Translators helped English speakers understand the play, which drew nearly 500 people to Courthouse Park.
Directed by Madera resident Juan Santiago, a native of San Juan Coatecas Altas, Oaxaca, Fandango Zapoteco was the result of years of research by local youth aimed at learning and eventually showcasing the traditions of their ancestors.
“This is a theatrical reproduction of the usual practices that lead to a traditional wedding as it’s celebrated in Coatecas Altas,” said Santiago. “The project was an opportunity for the new generations to learn about their heritage,” he said...