Tradicional Danza Mexica, which originates from central Mexico, could best be described as “a prayer in movement.” It combines the music of sacred instruments—the drum (huehuetl), hand drum (panhuehuetl), the rattles (ayacaxtlis), and the foot rattles (coyollis)—with the movement of dancer’s bodies. The danza ceremony creates a connection of the human spirit with Mother Earth, the Creation. Master artist Agustin Diaz learned this art form when he joined the troupe Danza Mexica Quetzalcoatl in 2006. During his years studying at the National Autonomous University of Mexico, he gained a wide knowledge about the history and ancient culture of Mexico. “Danza gives a sense of identity and direction to the Mexican person; it is their patrimony,” he says. “It is their heritage. It is a medium by which we can establish relationships and share with other cultural groups. Danza is present in ceremonial, cultural, and educational events.”
Agustin’s apprentice, Rosa Garcia, is highly skilled dancer, drummer, and singer. She began practicing Danza in 2012, when a friend of her family and her initial instructor, Refugio Pantoja, invited her to join the Mexica group Danza Mexica Quetzalcoatl. Rosa and Agustin were recently featured on WMC Action News 5’s “Bluff City Life.” With Agustin she will deepen her understanding of the music, dance, and significance of the ceremony.