I love to see the bands that play on the zocalo on Sundays. When I list off the things that draw m back to Oaxaca annually (or more frequently), the music is usually in the top five after the warm people, the delicious food, and the everyday opportunities for harrowing adventures (especially by bus).
When I could not find the band this afternoon, I was disappointed and decided to head home to wrestle with my grouchy computer. I heard music along the way and thought it was another fiesta de 15 anos or Guelaguetza exhibition, but, no, it was the Sunday band. The band and the, to start, scant crowd were huddled under a much smaller tree (than the usual laurel on the zocalo) just off the plaza outside of Santo Domingo Church.
The band was the Banda de Musica de Otatitlan de Morelos, and the members were youths, from age twelve on up.
They played a range of pieces that embodied their motto of: “cooperacion, esfuerzo, y creatividad” (cooperation, effort, and creativity) as they created energy out of a normally lethargic Sunday afternoon. Spectators could feel the energy building as the performance progressed and especially, near the end, as they encouraged all of us to sing along to a traditional song.
And, they played two encore pieces because of the demands of the dancing crowd. One of their pieces is called “Que Alegria” (What Joy), and this is the perfect way to describe the whole performance.