Danza de los Viejitos

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'Danza de los Viejitos' (dance of the old men) is a traditional folk dance in Michoacán, Mexico.


Danza de los Viejitos is said have begun as a dance in the Purepecha Region. The men that perform this dance are known as "Danzantes" or "Dancers." This dance was danced by the Purepecha people four men to represent fire, water, earth, and air. Four dancers are also believed to be the correct number to dance in this traditional performance because there are four colors that make corn which is red, yellow, white, and blue.[1] The dancers ask El Dios Viejo (The Old God) for good harvest, communication with spirits, and to learn about the past or to predict the future.


A Danzante wears a top and bottom made out of a white blanket. It is topped with a "Sarape," which is a blanket worn as a cloak in Latin America. Each Serape contains different designs and colors. They wear a hat made out of straw with adorned lengthy pieces of ribbon, each one a different color. The ribbon is parted down the middle of the hat, each one hanging 10 cm on the sides. Their shoes are sandals that have a wooden sole in order to make a tapping noise throughout their dance, followed by a wooden cane they also use. The dancers also wear a mask made out of either wood, cornstalk paste, or clay with an elderly man's face painted on it.

Traditional clothing from head to toe.
Wooden sole sandals used to make tapping noise.
The traditional clothing of a "Danzante."


The music consists of 3 instruments.

Instruments used for The Danza de los Viejitos.



  1. ^ "Los viejitos, tradición purépecha". Como en el tianguis. Retrieved 2015-07-13.

Further reading[edit]

  • Hellier-Tinoco, Ruth. Embodying Mexico: Tourism, Nationalism & Performance. New York: Oxford University Press 2011. ISBN 978-0199790814