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Experience the music and dance of Peru

Published: Tuesday, April 23, 2013 10:06 a.m. CDT

DeKALB – Experience the music and dance traditions of Peru during a free performance scheduled for 5 p.m. Saturday, April 27, at Conexion Comunidad, 637 N. 11th St. in DeKalb.

The Peruvian Folk Dance Center of Chicago will perform traditional dances in concert with Peruvian music played by Guitarra, Cajon y Zampona.

This free community event is provided by the Anthropology Museum at NIU, in conjunction with an exhibition titled “Beyond Machu Picchu: Culture and Identity in the Andes.”

The Beyond Machu Picchu exhibition at the Anthropology Museum explores the material record of cultural identity in the Andes by contrasting objects from ancient, pre-European times with objects from today.

From contemporary Peruvian pottery and jewelry to ancient ceremonial knives, gold and textiles, the objects in this exhibition were selected to demonstrate that although Andean culture has been evolving for centuries, there is a shared cultural identity that has persevered over time.

Objects represent a range of highland and coastal regions as well as different materials and styles, reminding us of the blend of continuity and change visible in the contemporary world.

“One of my favorite objects in this exhibition is the quipu, an ancient system of record-keeping that archaeologists and historians have not been able to interpret,” said Jennifer Kirker Priest, co-curator of the exhibition and director of the Anthropology Museum.

“This very rare and important piece of Peruvian history has become a powerful symbol for the perseverance of native Peruvian peoples and their traditions, even though its explicit meaning has changed since it was created.”

Both the exhibition and the cultural performance are made possible by generous financial support from the Department of Anthropology and the Center for Latino and Latin American Studies and by a grant award from the Illinois Humanities Council.

The exhibition will be on display through June 29.

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