Ministry of Culture blocks participation of local group in Europe
The lack of support has left a dance company without being able to represent San Luis Potosí
By José Luis Vázquez
The Folkloric Dance Company of San Luis Potosí «Guadalupe Omexochitl» has the opportunity to represent the state and the country internationally, but the director of cultural development Manuel Gameros Hidalgo Monroy of the Ministry of Culture, in charge of Armando Herrera Silva, denied them such opportunity, under the justification of lack of budget.
The directors José Rafael Banda Esparza and Eric Gómez Cervantes denounced the requested support was not granted under the pretext that the budget of Expenditures 2018, approved for the Ministry of Culture on December 15 in the amount of 209 million 659 thousand 355 pesos: «will be released until the month of April.» For this reason, they requested a letter to the Secretariat where it is indicated that they can not be supported, to have it as a background, which has not been received since November.
Last year, they also received no support from the authorities, so each one of the dancers and musicians had to find another option to pay for their trip and represent the country’s folk dance, «as independents we have always done anniversary functions and functions of farewell to collect funds for the passage of musicians», said Rafael Banda.
He added that it is increasingly difficult to perform this type of function, because government agencies such as the Teatro de la Paz put many obstacles, «we organized the Potosino Folkloric Fest, right now it is very difficult, taxes went up, (get) the municipal and state approval. Every year they add more and more taxes, if we do that, we only have 10 thousand pesos left«. He added that the theater charges 10 pesos per ticket, «they take around 30 thousand pesos just for sure, before that clause was not there, we only paid a thousand pesos for that, we had to cancel the seventh edition».
«The folklor gives for more, there are many groups that represent the state and the country. Like the UASLP and the Potosino Institute of Fine Arts», he said.
He stressed that the support requested by the directors consists in paying only the tickets of the musicians who oscillate between 28 thousand and 30 thousand pesos to reach Europe, while the expenses of each dancer would be paid by each one of them; In total, there are 35 artists, including dancers and musicians.
Rafael Banda clarified that in the year of 2014 and 2015 they did receive help from the then director of Cultural Development, Juan Carlos Díaz Medrano, but he only supported with the musicians’ plane tickets: «We ask for support for them because at festivals they ask you for live music; we do not have the resource or the governmental support to give them something else, we only offer them their plane ticket», so other types of expenses are on their own.
«We do it for the love of art as all artists, I speak of singers, sculptors, painters or dancers, when they are asked for this kind of thing we are always there», meaning that they offer a type of contract to offer their work. for the support they request.
«I’m not asking for 400 thousand pesos», Banda said, referring to the amount they spend on many of the festivals held in the city and that bring national and international artists.
He also pointed out: «Mexican folklore is very appreciated in Colombia and in Europe, where the stages are very big and that neither in San Luis we have. In our country it is not very recognized, the thing is to represent Mexico through the dancers and musicians of the state».
The Folk Dance Company of San Luis Potosí was founded in 2000 under the direction of Lic. Eric Gómez Cervantes.
In 2013, he represented Mexico and San Luis Potosí at the Unidanza International Festival in Colombia.
In 2014, the company was invited to represent Mexico and our state in «Festivals du Sud», the network of festivals of arts and popular traditions in Europe, where they made a series of presentations for the countries of France, Italy and Spain; the directors considered it as a unique, original company and an excellent representative of our country.
During 2015, accompanied by the mariachi «Los Arrieros» from Lagos de Moreno Jalisco, directed by maestro Juan Antonio Torres Jiménez, they toured France, Spain and Switzerland, participating in the Folkloric Festival of the Pyrenees in Jaca, Spain, considered as «the folkloric capital of the world», where the mariachi «Los Arrieros» and the Company were cataloged as one of the best representatives of Mexico of all time.
Due to the quality of the show that this company «Les Carnavals du Monde» extended the invitation to participate in a 35-day tour of Belgium, France and Holland during the months of July and August 2016.
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