Parque plaza grande
Calle 60, Centro, 97000 Mérida, Yuc.
The jarana is the typical dance of Yucatán. There are two types: the 6×8 jarana, a type of tap dance, is the grandchild of the Andalusian “aire” and child of the Mestizo song; and the 3×4 jarana, which developed later, is a type of “aire de jota aragonesa” waltz. Originally it was only a dance, but as time went by, rhyming texts were added.
The jarana is a tap dance without fixed steps and no differentiation between the men and the women, and each can make his/her own dance creation. The posture is erect due to the solemnity of the aboriginal dances, but during the waltz sections they make turns while raising their arms in a straight line, like the “jota” dancers, snapping their fingers to represent the Spanish castanets. Two beats of the drum indicate the start of the dance.
If at the end of each jarana there are only a few couples remaining to compete for endurance, the euphoria of the crowd becomes more and more vocal, cheering on their favorite dancers, and identifying the winners by stacking various hats on top of their heads, to symbolize a crown.
It is very common that right in the middle of a dance, one of the dancers will stop the music and shout “bomba!”. At this moment he or she recites a humorous verse to his/her partner, always within the limits of decency. Originally from Spain, it represents a spark of ingenuity which provokes an outbreak of laughter and joy.
You can see a vaquería show every Monday at 9 pm outside the Palacio Municipal. Calle 62 x 61 y 63, Centro.