The senior citizen folkloric ballet troupe of Mérida won first prize in a national competition last month. Back from Tlaxcala, the women were given a hero’s welcome by Mayor Mauricio Vila.
El ballet del Adulto Mayor, initially called la Tercera Edad, or Third Age, was created 10 years ago to organize a municipal vaquería — a traditional Yucatecan feast with music and dance — celebrating the Day of the Senior Citizen. So the Department of Culture through the Municipal School of Regional Folklore formed the group.
Several students of the school itself enrolled under the direction of Professor Evelin Arzápalo Caballero. Within 10 months, the 10 women and five men were performing publicly, at “Mérida en Domingo.”
On May 22, the troupe took top marks at National Meeting of Senior Citizens Groups, Ballets and Folkloric Dance Companies in Chiautempan, Tlaxcala. They faced down rivals from Puebla, Veracruz, Tlaxcala and Mexico City.
After taking a souvenir photo on the balcony of the city hall, members of the ballet received a trophy and a packet of sweets from Tlaxcala from the mayor, who gave them a each a official pin with the city’s emblem.