Mexican Fiesta Dances:

Day of the Dead

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Marc Kotz in skeleton costume in front of an ofrenda

Program Description:

In Mexico, Fiestas are a form of national recreation celebrating many different aspects of culture and society. This videoconference (or on-site) program challenges learners with different Fiesta dances relating to the theme of life/ death, tying into a focus on the Day of the Dead. During the program, students will learn about and try variations of traditional dances including the “Dance of the Little Old Men” (Los Viejitos), the “Dance of Los Voladores” (The Flyers) as well as creative dance with the “Hand Waving Dance” (a preparation ritual done in cemeteries and at the ofrenda); and the “Skeleton Dance.” Emphasis is placed on how each dance/activity embodies a specific message or concept inherent to the Fiesta.


Students, grades 3-12


Primary Disciplines:

History, Foreign/World Languages, Fine Arts, Performing Arts

Cost per session/school:

$150 per session

Learning Objectives:

Students will

  • explore the role of dance as related to culture
  • learn about and experience two traditional Mexican fiesta dances
  • learn to express themselves through creative dance
  • gain a better understanding of the cultural significance of these dances and how they relate to festivals
  • develop an appreciation of the role that festivals play in a culture
  • gain insights about themselves, their own lives, and the world around them by learning about other cultures.




View a video about this and Marc’s other efield trip offerings

Comments about this program:

“The program is a great opportunity for students to be exposed to cultural traditions.” – Anonymous

“Students had the opportunity at length to practice the fiesta dances which cannot be accomplished in a regular classroom setting. Students got a chance to relate to the theme of Day of the Dead in that it is not a scary holiday, but a time to remember loved ones who have passed in a positive way”. – Teacher from Rockville Centre, NY

“Students enjoyed the program and had a neat time learning about the Mexican culture”, Southwest School Corporation, Indiana

Marc Kotz in Los Viejitos costume in front of ofrenda

About the presenter:

Marc Kotz is a life-long performing artist and teacher who delights in venturing to other cultures and times through the means of dance, theater, music and educational exploration. His career has taken him around the world, (literally and figuratively) delving into diverse cultures and artistic disciplines. He has performed in numerous dance and theater forms, collaborated on two dozen plays/musicals/operas and has choreographed and directed ten concert-length productions, half of which were his own original scripts. Marc received a Master of Fine Arts degree from the University of Iowa as an Iowa Arts Fellow, has taught all ages from pre-school to the aged (including 12 years at the university level) and directs his own arts-integration company, Born 2 Move Movement Adventures, LLC.






For more information, contact:

Dean Leisgang
Distance Learning Coordinator & Scheduler
(920) 617-5633


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