The great day of Sibundoy

The great day of Sibundoy
Sound documentary


The big day or Bëtscnate is the most important date for the Kamentsá community of Sibundoy in Putumayo, Colombia. The celebration is also known as the Carnival of Forgiveness held every year in February. The carnival is a ritual of reconciliation between people and an act of gratitude to mother earth for the fruits provided during the previous year. As part of the festivities, there will be offerings, dances, songs, shouts and an eye-catching parade in which colorful clothes and feather crowns made by the Inga and Kamëntsá communities are used.

The Carnival of Forgiveness, declared Cultural Heritage of Humanity in 2012, begins with a great walk where both the local ethnic group and foreign groups participate, the walk is accompanied by dances that to the sound of drums, flutes, harmonicas and seed necklaces reach the main park of Sibundoy, where they bless the rods of command of the chiefs and indigenous chiefs. Another part of this celebration is the Flower Ceremony, this act pays homage to the leaders and outstanding people of the community, they are offered with floral ornaments that are considered a symbol of the renewal of the vows for the coexistence between the two peoples.

This sound documentary is based on the testimonies of Ángela Lucía Sánchez Castillo, a Colombian medical doctor, sociologist and political scientist. The interview was conducted in the plaza of Sibundoy, while celebrating the 2023 carnival, on Monday, February 20. During 12 minutes Angela tells us the history of the masks, costumes, choreographies and sacrifices around this celebration.

Sylvia Gómez, Valentina Bocanegra, Guillermo Bocanegra and Martín Virgili participated in the interview. The recording was made with an iPhone 14 pro.

The project was carried out within the framework of the creative residency Ecosistema de Sentidos, coordinated by Valentina Bocanegra and Oscar Salazar, in the city of Pasto, Colombia, February 17 – 21, 2023.