La Parranda de San Pedro de Guarenas y Guatire

Inscribed in 2013 (8.COM) on the Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity

Country(ies): Venezuela (Bolivarian Republic of)



La Parranda de San Pedro de Guarenas y Guatire

Every year in the small towns of Guarenas and Guatire, devotees of San Pedro the Apostle celebrate his saint’s day with a series of popular festivities and rituals. An image of San Pedro is stored in all the town’s churches while the saint is celebrated with popular songs. Then, at midnight, a mass is held and the images are taken out and paraded through the streets. Central to the celebration is a re-enactment of the story of the slave María Ignacia, whose daughter was healed by the saint. Parranderos play key roles in the drama, wearing colourful, carefully prepared costumes representing the different characters, while other participants bear flags and banners, dance, play instruments, sing and improvise popular tunes. Women participate by preparing and training younger generations through workshops and by decorating the churches, dressing images of the saint and cooking traditional dishes. During the festival, the dancers, together with their families, neighbours and other community adults and children, gather to share moments of joy and togetherness. Every gathering serves to celebrate the spirit of the community, the energy and happiness of the dancers, and the vitality of a tradition that symbolizes and reasserts the struggle against injustice and inequality.


Decision 8.COM 8.30

The Committee (…) decides that [this element] satisfies the criteria for inscription on the Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity, as follows:

  • R.1: La Parranda de San Pedro de Guarenas y Guatire mobilizes community members of all ages and genders who pass down its music, dance and craftsmanship to young generations within families, local schools and cultural centres, thus nourishing a sense of belonging, continuity and mutual respect;
  • R.2: Inscription of La Parranda de San Pedro on the Representative List could contribute to raising awareness of the importance of such heritage for social cohesion and dialogue and promoting respect for human creativity;
  • R.3: Proposed safeguarding measures aim at raising awareness of the importance of such heritage, documenting it, ensuring its transmission to younger generations and countering potential adverse impacts of the inscription;
  • R.4: The nomination results from the initiative and active participation of the communities of Guarenas and Guatire; they provided their free, prior and informed consent;
  • R.5: La Parranda de San Pedro de Guarenas y Guatire is included in the Inventory of Intangible Cultural Heritage compiled by the Institute of Cultural Heritage which promotes community involvement in heritage management; it is also included in the Census and Catalogue of Venezuelan Cultural Heritage.



© 2012 by Centro de la Diversidad Cultural

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