"Soy Chapina" marimba band
The only dance music we had in olden days was marimba music. This picture was taken at the Pilar Maya Center.
116 years ago (One hundred and sixteen years ago) The family of Mr Ivan Flowers of Santa Elena, brought this marimba from across the border in Peten. The name given was SOY CHAPINA.
This marimba was brought on the 24th of December 1901 ( no doubt for a Christmas Dance.
The late Ivan Flowers and his fellow marimberos supplied music with this marimba for many many years in the Cayo District.
Some five years ago, I went to the " DIA DEl PILAR " fiesta and lo and behold, there was this ancient playing.
Upon my inquiry, I was told that The Flowers family had rented the marimba for that day.
THE POINT I want to make is, that for over one hundred years, MARIMBA was our music in the Cayo. The only time we heard a WIND INSTRUMENT was when we had horse racing on Holy Saturday. A trunmpet blared, when the horses were coming to the finishing point. ( gone are those days before BOOM BOOM took over.
Alma Belicenia. Benque own marimba tunes, back then. Don Felipe Morales y Don Manuel Castellanos, Don Augustine Mendez, Don Rogelio Mendez. Musicones al son de las Maderas. All R.I.P.
- Used to love hearing them back in the he day at the Benque Fiestas. Mr. Ivan's children used to have birthday parties and the men would be playing the marimba.
- I had this marimba play at my wedding a t The Cahel Pesh Mayan Village I believe Eddie Panti made the arrangements. It was the highlight of the ceremony.
- My mother used to love the marimba and Spanish folkdance including Mexican zapateado.
Adolfo Moreno, better known to family and friends as, "Pikilin" comes from a famous musical family, where three brothers Wilfredo, Adolfo and Amalio Moreno supplied quality marimba music for all occasions for many years. Their famous Marimba was named the "THE WESTERN MELODY."
IN HOMAGE TO ADOLFO JR., my family and I extend our sincere condolences to his Wife, his children and Sisters, Noemi, Melba and Celia and brother Armando and another brother somewhere in the USA.
Farewell Pikilin, May you rest in peace with the Lord. (One of the Moreno girls is in this picture, if you look good.)
Belize National Anthem by the marimba band 'Los Hijos del West'
Photograph courtesy Hector Silva
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