CUR TravelGuide 02.04.20 - Flipbook - Page 32
The music scene in Curaçao has really taken off in recent years.
Local musicians are making a name for themselves as their following
continues to grow.
Carnival is the main cultural event of the year on the island - a festive
mix of music, theatre, street parties, art, culture, history and folklore.
If you want a true glimpse of Curaçao and its people, this is the time
to visit. Carnival season starts at the beginning of January and ends on
Mardi Gras (the Tuesday before Ash Wednesday). The Grand Parade
turns the streets and alleyways of Willemstad into one big street party.
The climax of the festivities is the traditional burning of King Momo at
midnight to wash away all the negativity of the past year.
The word ‘tumba’ derives from the Bantu and Mandinka word for drum.
Tumba is of African origin, although the music has developed since it
was introduced on the island in the 17th century. Nowadays the Tumba
is influenced by merengue, Afro-Caribbean rhythms and Latin jazz.
Tumba plays a major role at Carnival time. Numerous artists compete
to win the coveted title of Tumba King or Queen at the annual Festival
of Tumba. The winner’s song becomes the official tumba or anthem of
that year’s Carnival.
Seú music is the rhythm of Curaçao’s harvest festival. The original
festivalgoers would parade through the fields doing a graceful dance
called the ‘wapa’ to symbolize planting and harvesting. These days,
the traditional parade proceeds through the streets of Willemstad on
Easter Monday. More than 5,000 revelers of all ages take part.
32 • people and culture