Merida, July 31st 2011 (Venezuelanalysis.com) – On Saturday Venezuela ended weeks of bicentennial independence celebrations with a massive cultural parade at the Paseo de los Proceres in Caracas. Televised live on national television, thousands of artists, musicians, and dancers joined together in a cultural display aimed at presenting the different historical moments Venezuela has lived through before, during, and after the break from Spanish colonial rule.
Titled “Independence Forever”, Saturday’s parade marked the end of bicentennial independence celebrations that began on July 5th.
The two-hour long parade, involving a total 7,200 cultural performers, was divided into 16 “historical moments” that included pre-colonial indigenous Venezuela, the arrival of the Spanish conquest and the enslavement of black Africans, the country’s first struggles for independence, and the current process of social transformation that many supporters of Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez call the “second and final independence.”
The unnamed Master of Ceremonies opened the event by stating that “the independence achieved by the people of Venezuela 200 years ago is alive and well in the soul of the homeland. We are a free country, owners of our present and of our future.”
Towards the end of 16 different “historical moments,” performed by those gathered for the parade, the Master of Ceremonies affirmed that “from the courageous resistance of our indigenous peoples who confronted the Spanish invasion to the heroic struggle of our people to secure the greater amount of happiness possible, the cry for independence has always been present.”
Speaking to reporters on Saturday, Venezuelan Minister of Culture Pedro Calzadilla said the parade was a “historical, symbolic, and allegorical review of our history; an open-ended review of the past, the present, and above all else, aimed at the future.”
Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, who commented on Saturday’s event through the social networking medium Twitter, congratulated the cultural performers for “the talent and awareness” that went in to preparing the parade and affirmed that “this is our real history!”
“What a homeland we have liberated again!” affirmed Chavez. “Long live Venezuela! Independence and Socialist Homeland! We will live and we will win!” he said.
The entire parade can be viewed on YouTube, in Spanish, by clicking HERE.