Archives



Carlos Chavarria Meaning and Purpose of Congo Tradition

In this excerpt, Chavarría discusses the meaning and purpose of the Congo tradition as well as a recent opportunity to talk about the Portobelo Congo tradition with a colleague from the Democratic Republic of Congo.

September 29, 2023

Carlos Chavarria Significance and Meaning of Devil

In this excerpt, Chavarría discusses the significance and meaning of the devil character in the Congo tradition.

September 29, 2023

Carlos Chavarria Memories of Congo before the Road

In this excerpt, Chavarría shares memories about how the Congo tradition of Portobelo was enacted before “the road” opened up the town to the broader community. Then, Congo carnival was a intimate community celebration in which everyone participated.

September 29, 2023

Carlos Chavarria Childhood Memories of Congo before the Road

In this excerpt, Chavarría shares childhood memories about how the Congo tradition was enacted before “the road.” In the “closed” community people did not work during carnival season, pooled resources, shared food, and communed together for several days as part of their celebration.

September 29, 2023

Carlos Chavarria Major Devil in the Passion of the Christ

In this excerpt, Chavarría shares a story about what happened when the Major Devil played the starring role in the Passion of Christ.

September 29, 2023

Carlos Chavarria Most Important Things to Know about Congo in Portobelo

In this excerpt, Chavarría responds to the question, “One hundred years in the future when scholars are studying the Congo tradition in Portobelo, what are the most important things that they should know?”

September 29, 2023

Carlos Chavarria Devil Greetings, Baptisms, and Crossing Feet

In this excerpt, Chavarría discusses the way in which hierarchies of Congo Devils greet one another, how they are baptized within the tradition, and the importance of crossing one’s feet and “dancing” in the devil way.

September 29, 2023

Carlos Chavarria Last Performance of Celedonio

In this excerpt, Chavarría discusses his memory of the last time the renowned Celedonio Molinar performed as devil and how his mentor retired in 2003 after being honored at that year’s Festival de los Diablos.

September 29, 2023

Carlos Chavarria Memories of Celedonio Molinar

In this excerpt, Chavarría shares cherished memories of his mentor, Celedonio Molinar, including seeing him “fly” from roof to roof as Major Devil. Chavarría also discusses important lessons and ritual practices that he learned from his mentor about performing the Major Devil role.

September 29, 2023

Carlos Chavarria Playing Devil from Emotion

In this excerpt, Chavarría talks about the importance, for him, of playing the Devil character from “emotion” and his decision to break away from a particular ritual that marked his mentor’s embodiment of Major Devil.

September 29, 2023