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The announcement was made during the José Barros Palomino National Cumbia Festival. Photo: Twitter MinCultura
The announcement was made during the José Barros Palomino National Cumbia Festival. Photo: Twitter- MinCultura

Cumbia becomes part of Colombia's heritage

The musical rhythm joins the cultural annals of the country's own sounds.

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On Sunday, Oct. 17, during the José Barros Palomino National Cumbia Festival, the Culture Minister, Patricia Ariza, declared Cumbia Cultural Heritage of Colombia.

Cumbia is a rhythm of the Colombian Caribbean Coast that fuses three cultures of the Colony: African, Indigenous and Spanish.  

Black culture contributed the rhythm and drums; the Indigenous culture provided caña de millo and the gaita, and Spanish culture brought influence on the costumes.

"Cumbia is the heritage of all Colombians, it deserves a place in the history of Colombia and an important consideration in the culture. Cumbia is a true heritage of El Banco, of Colombia, of Latin America and, hopefully, one day it will be a heritage of humanity," said the minister during her presentation.

Similarly, Colombia's Culture Ministry reaffirmed that the history of this musical rhythm also helped shape the identity of the country's Caribbean peoples.

"Cumbia is a cultural manifestation that brings together the musical genre, the dance, as well as the set of practices and traditions linked to its development, such as costumes, the manufacture of handmade instruments, rituals and parties," the institution wrote on Twitter. 

With this recognition, the effort and work of composers, dancers, choreographers and artisans who have fought for  the preservation of cultural and traditional memory and have made it possible for cumbia to be part of the country's history and a reference in the world are also recognized, according to the Ministry of Culture.

Vallenato and champeta are other typical Colombian rhythms that are also Cultural Heritage.

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