Ambience: Las Posadas music
In Mexico and in many Hispanic-American communities, the eight days before Christmas are celebrated with posadas. I’m Jim Metzner and this is the Pulse of the Planet.
Las Posadas means lodging, and the event commemorates Mary and Joseph’s search for lodging in Bethlehem. In Mexican cities and villages, processions of people carrying candles and singing hymns weave through the streets. Near the head of the group, perhaps even riding a burro, are people dressed up as Mary, Joseph and a guardian angel.
The group is turned away from many houses, but finally, at a prearranged spot, they’re welcomed in, and a celebration begins. In Oakland, California, where we made this recording, the celebration was held at a local church.
“You know when Jesus and Mary were looking for a place to go. For her to have the baby. They were looking all over the houses to see who would let them in. And then, that’s what we’re celebrating. We go off and we sing a song as we go on. It’s one song only, but it’s really, really long and lasts us for quite a long time.”
And however long the procession may be in Las Posadas, the children know that there are treats waiting for them, hiding inside a piata.
Ambience: piata celebration
Celebrating Las Posadas in Oakland, California, I’m Jim Metzner, and this is the Pulse of the Planet, presented by the National Science Foundation.