One would expect that Mexican folkloric dance, which traces its origins to a mixture of indigenous practices with the influence of the Spanish conquest has nothing new under the sun.
One would be wrong from watching the Mexican folkloric dance showcase all three days at PuebloFest.
Other than a couple of glitches with electrical power, the dance groups from México and California that showed up put on dazzling examples of showmanship, choreography and creativity.
In the end, it was Los Danzantes de Aztlán from Fresno State that walked off with the first-place trophy after putting a new spin on a dance from Hidalgo. The women dancers used their rebozos (Mexican shawls) to “harness” their dance partners.
Teocalli Cultural Academy, borrowing on choreography by Óscar Bustos, captured second place in the competition with a dance from Veracruz.
Third place went to San José’s Alika de Nayar, which presented a dance from Guerrero.
Julio Bustos, Teocalli director and coordinator of the showcase, said the event would likely move inside a building on the sprawling Tulare International Agri-Center next year to accommodate the groups and their fans.