Posted by: Jena Davison | December 10, 2010

Desfile de Luces y Colores: Parade of Lights and Colors

It was the final day of Fiestas de Quito 2010, and I decided I should probably squeeze in a cultural activity amid all my partying and concert-going. So I headed to the Desfile de Luces y Colores, or Parade of Lights and Colors. Staying true to its name, the parade was certainly a spectacle. Different schools and folkloric organizations in Quito prepared synchronized dances, which were accompanied by glitzy costumes–ranging from typical indigenous clothing to dance recital-type outfits. It was very visually stimulated as moving bodies gave the illusion of swirling colors in different patterns. Marching bands blew their horns and banged their drums to provide the background music. Clowns, men on stilts and huge floats were also part of the mix, adding an element of humor.

Parade participants would scream “Viva Quito!” every two minutes and the crowd would yell back, “Que viva!”, constantly reminding me that the parade was a celebration of Quito’s founding. During Fiestas de Quito, there is a noticeably festive spirit in Quito and a proud display of its culture throughout the city. However, there is some debate over what exactly is being celebrated. It is technically a celebration of freedom from Spain, yet there were lots of indigneous people living here even prior to the arrival of Spaniards.

Here are some snipets of the parade in photo and video form so that you can get a feel for what it was like:

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  1. […] chivas), cuarenta card tournaments (the national card game), bull fighting shows, and folkloric parades, music and […]

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