9.COM 10.11

The Committee

  1. Takes note that Chile has nominated Baile Chino (No. 00988) for inscription on the Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity:

Bailes Chinos are brotherhoods of musicians who express their faith through music, dance and singing in the context of commemoration festivities. The practice stretches mainly from the area known as the Norte Chico to the central region of Chile and comprises five fully differentiated styles, each named after the valley or basin where it is most prevalent. Organized mainly by men from rural areas, Baile Chino dances consist of jumps and flexing movements of the legs, performed to the rhythm of isometric instrumental music played on drums and flutes of pre-Columbian origin. The leader sings memorized or improvised rhyming couplets in stanzas that recount holy stories and address religious subjects. He is accompanied by an equal number of musicians and dancers organized in two symmetric columns. A drummer leads the choreography and controls the tempo of the music. Each group also has a flag bearer and guards, who are usually women. The music, dances and couplets are learnt through direct observation, imitation and transmission in the family. Bailes Chinos are a tool for social participation providing prestige to those involved. They function as a model for social integration and cohesion to which almost the entire local community subscribes, out of a sense of identity and solidarity.

  1. Decides that, from the information included in the file, the nomination satisfies the following criteria for inscription on the Representative List:

R.1:   Encompassing knowledge and skills related to lyric, music and dance, the Baile Chino is transmitted through direct observation, imitation and teaching within families, providing a sense of identity to those who practise it while operating as a vector of social integration for newcomers;

R.2:   Through the diversity of cultural practices at the service of religious beliefs and the human creativity of different brotherhoods that the Baile Chino embodies, its inscription on the Representative List could contribute to encouraging dialogue and mutual respect;

R.3:   A set of safeguarding measures is elaborated, including the systematic registering of brotherhoods and bearers, the publication of a national database, the organization of regional and national meetings to strengthen transmission and the protection of the ceremonial places where the Baile Chino is performed; the proposed measures benefit from the support and involvement of the State Party and of concerned communities;

R.4:   Originating from the request of several brotherhoods, the nomination was developed by a committee composed of several governmental institutions including universities and museums; written evidence of consent and support from several leaders and representatives of the concerned brotherhoods is provided;

R.5:   Twenty-seven Bailes Chinos are registered in the Heritage Management Information System (SIGPA), a participatory database in which individuals or communities may register an element; the State Party also developed a Prioritized Inventory of Intangible Cultural Heritage in Chile, from which elements are selected for elaboration of a nomination file to the Representative List.

  1. Inscribes Baile Chino on the Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.

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