Korubo: Ritual Dance

Ritual DanceHere’s a program from our archives. Western Brazil’s Javari River valley is an area the size of Florida, and home to a number of indigenous peoples who have had little or no contact with the outside world. In 1996, an expedition was launched to establish peaceful contact with one of these groups, the Korubo Indians. I’m Jim Metzner, and this is the Pulse of the Planet, presented by the American Museum of Natural History. French photographer Nicholas Reynard was one of the few journalists who accompanied the expedition to the heart of the Amazon. He tells us that after months of searching, when the team finally encountered a small group of the Korubo, the Indians responded with a form of ritual.ambience: Korumo Indian ChantReynard: After we made contact in the Korubo’s field, they followed us up to the camp. We arrived at our camp and suddenly the Korubo take some herbs around the camp and like they were washing our faces with this herb and trying to pacify us, I guess. And just after that they start to do some type of dance, taking us each by the hand and dancing like one Korubo, one member of the expedition, one Korubo, one member of the expedition and they were like singing and shouting very very strongly. Everybody was smiling, everybody was laughing, but everybody was very, very tense on both sides. Journalist Claudia Baran.Baran: They took our hands and made a circle. I began to sing with the Korubo and when the Korubo sing, they look me right in my eyes. It’s like a trance.This program is dedicated to the memory of photographer Nicholas Reynard, who was killed in a plane crash in the Amazon.

Korubo: Ritual Dance

Nicholas Reynard and Claudia Baran describe their first interaction with the elusive Korubo Indians of the Brazilian Amazon.
Air Date:05/04/1998
Scientist:
Transcript:

Ritual DanceHere's a program from our archives. Western Brazil's Javari River valley is an area the size of Florida, and home to a number of indigenous peoples who have had little or no contact with the outside world. In 1996, an expedition was launched to establish peaceful contact with one of these groups, the Korubo Indians. I'm Jim Metzner, and this is the Pulse of the Planet, presented by the American Museum of Natural History. French photographer Nicholas Reynard was one of the few journalists who accompanied the expedition to the heart of the Amazon. He tells us that after months of searching, when the team finally encountered a small group of the Korubo, the Indians responded with a form of ritual.ambience: Korumo Indian ChantReynard: After we made contact in the Korubo's field, they followed us up to the camp. We arrived at our camp and suddenly the Korubo take some herbs around the camp and like they were washing our faces with this herb and trying to pacify us, I guess. And just after that they start to do some type of dance, taking us each by the hand and dancing like one Korubo, one member of the expedition, one Korubo, one member of the expedition and they were like singing and shouting very very strongly. Everybody was smiling, everybody was laughing, but everybody was very, very tense on both sides. Journalist Claudia Baran.Baran: They took our hands and made a circle. I began to sing with the Korubo and when the Korubo sing, they look me right in my eyes. It's like a trance.This program is dedicated to the memory of photographer Nicholas Reynard, who was killed in a plane crash in the Amazon.