Traditions

The Romance of Veracruz
El Danzón!

Photos and Text by John Todd, Jr.

La Plazuela de la Campana on Sunday Evenings
The Danzón in Veracruz
In Veracruz, you can dance to the slow music of the past almost every night.

You might start on the Zócalo around 7 or 8 PM.It´s where there is music and dances every night of the year and one of the fixtures in Veracruz is a slow tropical dance called "El Danzón".

It began as the rage in the late 1870´s, and later spread to Yucatan, then to the rest of Mexico.

Since then, tropical dances like the cha-cha-cha, rhumba, and salsa have come and gone, but the Danzón remains in Veracruz almost as a cultural fixture preserved by the people of Veracruz.

It´s not just something set up for tourists.
La Plazuela de la Campana on Sunday Evenings
The Danzón is Popular in Mexico
The danzón became wildly popular, and there were dance halls such as the Salón Mexico in Mexico City specializing in the danzón.

There is even a film called "El Danzón" with María Rojo.

For many people, the music of the tropical danzón evokes the romantic feeling of Veracruz back in the good old days.

Danzón Clubs
There are several danzón clubs in Veracruz where the members dust off and dress up in their grandparents old clothes of the 1930´s.
La Plazuela de la Campana on Sunday Evenings
The Danzón has a great deal of style and technique, and if you watch closely you can see where it is not all that easy.Some people in Veracruz spend their lives perfecting this beautiful tropical dance.

You can also see the "real danzón" in it´s 19th Century splendor in the Parque Zamora on Sunday nights. The music starts around sundown.

The Danzón is for Everybody
Yet you don´t have to be a professional dancer.

The Plazuela la Campana is for families who come out each Sunday to enjoy the last hours of the weekend and relax in the traditional way of families in Veracruz.

Here are some film clips I took on a steamy tropical Sunday night in Veracruz.
La Plazuela de la Campana on Sunday Evenings
MPG Video
Danzón Clip 1
MPG Video
Danzón Clip 2
MPG Video
Danzón Clip 3
MPG Video
Danzón Clip 4
MPG Video
Danzón Clip 5
MPG Video
Danzón Clip 6

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