TITLE: Parrampán Mask
TYPE: face mask
GENERAL REGION: Latin America
SUBREGION: Azuero Peninsula
DESCRIPTION: Parrampán (Male) Mask
CATALOG ID: LAPA002
MAKER: José del Carmen González Santana (Chitré, 1959- )
CEREMONY: Danza de las Mojigangas y los Parrampanes (Corpus Christi)
FUNCTION: celebration; entertainment
MAIN MATERIAL: paper maché
OTHER MATERIALS: plastic balls; paint; elastic bands
The Dance of the Mojigangas and Parrampanes is a Panamanian tradition in the Azuero Peninsula during Corpus Christi celebrations and sometimes during Carnival. Each group is composed of drag dancers. The mojigangas are men dressed as women, and parrampanes are women dressed as men. They typically dance to the music of a flute, drum and accordeon, and their role is to clown around and satirize local public figures, such as the mayor, curate, recently wedded couples, etc. Unlike other dancers, the mojigangas and parrampanes never enter the church in masquerade, as they are considered profane.
For more on the folk masks of Panama, see Julio Arosemena Moreno, Danzas Folklóricas de la Villa de los Santos (Instituto Nacional de Cultura de Panamá 1994).