POLKA

Robert Boonzajer Flaes
Netherlands 1986 | 50 Min. | OmeU, Umatic

Polkas are played in many coun­tries all over the world and the dia­ton­ic accordeon is its clas­si­cal instru­ment. Where does this music come from and how did it change during this trail? As a cul­tur­al com­par­i­son the Dutch anthro­pol­o­gist R. Boon­za­jer looks at the dif­fer­ent social prac­tices of the polka in Aus­tria and South Texas. Polka being a ‚nation­al’ music in Aus­tria heard and played by every­one, in South Texas it is per­formed and heard by Mex­i­can-Amer­i­cans and farm work­ers. Today there are sev­er­al Discos at San Anto­nio where you can hear live per­for­mances of »Con­jun­to« groups and the polka is rec­og­nized as a North Amer­i­can art form along with blues, zydeco and cajun music.

In con­ver­sa­tions with musi­cians and man­agers we under­stand the impor­tance of ‚con­jun­to music’ for the Mex­i­can-Amer­i­can iden­ti­ty.