Eagle Dance of Tesuque




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rrm026.jpg (207795 bytes)
Figs. 26-27.
The Eagle Dance at Tesuque.

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Eagle Dance of Tesuque

At Tesuque (Indian, Te-tsu-ge, the cottonwood place), they are said to have the best Eagle dancers. One of these was Martin Vigil. The Indians consider the eagle the connecting link between Heaven and Earth; the eagle plumes are the prayer bearers.

Alice Corbin Henderson has said of this dance (Theatre Arts Magazine, April, 1923, p. I Io) : "The Eagle Dance, performed by the San Ildefonso or the Tesuque Pueblo, has all the delicacy and finesse of Pavlova's Dance of the Swan."

The chorus in the performance which we saw was composed of five men-four wearing Sioux war bonnets, and the center one a bright colored silk head hankie. They were clad in White men's shirts, long trousers decorated down the outside seams, beaded moccasins, and armlets. Some wore colored blankets draped around their middles. Two carried war drums (tombes) ; all sang. Victor record 20043 gives this song, of which I have tried to notate a characteristic portion (Song No. 9) .

There were, as always, two Eagle dancers. They were painted yellow on their bare forelegs and breast. The upper legs were painted white, and the rest of the body dark blue. Around the edge of the yellow breast were fastened soft, short white feathers. Each wore a short white skirt, embroidered in colors; bells about the waistline; red garters,

fringed, below the knee where the yellow legs joined the white. The close-fitting wig or cap was made of short white feathers, with a yellow bill attached. The wings were a strip of yellow material, extending across at back of the neck, along the arm line, farther than the fingertips. To the back side of this were fastened the long eagle plumes hanging in a straight line. Each wore a dancing bustle as tail. They were barefooted. (See Figs. 26 and 27.)


See Also:

Eagle Dance of Woodcraft

Rhythm of the Redman






Additional Information:

Peer- Level Topic Links:
Arrow Dance of the Navaho ] Basket Dance of Cochiti ] Basket Dance of Woodcraft ] Bow & Arrow Dance of Jemez ] Bow & Arrow Dance Woodcraft ] Comanche Dance of Woodcraft ] Comanche Dance of Zuni ] 2nd Comanche Dance of Zunis ] Corn Grinding Dance Woodcraft ] Corn Grinding Song of Zuni ] Coyote Dance of Woodcraft ] Dance of the Mudheads at Zuni ] Deer Dance of the Navahos ] Deer Dance of San Juan ] Dog Dance of San Juan ] Dog Dance of Woodcraft ] Doll Dance ] [ Eagle Dance of Tesuque ] Eagle Dance of Woodcraft ] Green Corn of Santo Domingo ] Harvest Dance of Zuni ] Hoop Dance of Taos ] Hoop Dance of Woodcraft ] Hopi Snake Dance ] Mountain Chant of the Navaho ] Pipe Dance of San Juan ] Rain Dance of Zuni ] Yei-Be-Chi ]

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