Jeff Rasley

...Experience Uruguay the auténtico way!

Uruguay has the longest Carnival Competition in the world! Starting at the end of January each year, local carnival groups compete for more than 40 days in 5 different categories for the Carnival title.

 

One of the 5 categories is ¨murga¨. It is one of the most popular carnival categories and combines different cultural and musical influences from Spain and Italy, having developed into something uniquely Uruguayan.

 

Murga-Groups consist of (at least) 17 members: 13 singers, 1 director and 3 percussionists playing cymbal, snare drum and bass drum. Nowadays, the murga groups take to the stage to criticize and make fun of society, politics and important events that have happend during the previous year through song. Costumes and make-up will remind you of Venetian Carnival and the murga groups´ singing-technique is inspired by opera - goose bumps are guaranteed!

 

Even though you might not understand the Spanish lyrics, visiting a local ¨tablado¨, a Carnival Stage during the Carnival Competition, is unique giving you the opportunity to experience authentic Uruguayan cultural expression and music.

I will pick you up at your hotel/B&B/apartment and we will take an UBER to one of the different carnival stages, so called ¨tablados¨, in town. You will learn about the history of ¨murga¨ and will be able to see 2 - 3 different live performances on stage. I won´t be able to translate the complete show to you, but I will help you understand the general context.

 

You will also be able to buy some typical local food (nothing fancy, but very typical) on spot such as ¨choripan¨ (chorizo on bread) or hamburgesas, and beverages.

 

You will also see many locals who have brought their mate to the tablado. Mate, pronounced „ma-tay“ , is a caffeine containing tea, that locals drink with a metal straw from a gourd – the tradition is also popular in Argentina and in the south of Brazil – however, most Uruguayos take it to the extreme and take their mate and thermos flask everywhere they go – also to the tablados! I will prepare some mate and will tell you all about the ritual and the etiquette – and of course, you are invited to try!

 

After 2.5 – 3h, we will take an UBER back to your lodging.

Date: From January 21st to March 4th

Duration: Approx. 2.5-3h

Number of Participants: 2

Location: At one of the different Carnival Stages (= tablados) in Montevideo.

Starting time: The exact pick up time will depend on which tablado we will visit - This depends on the line-up of the different tablados for this day which I will know approx. 3 days ahead. Normally, tablados start between 8 and 9 p.m.

 

Includes:

  • UBER ride from your hotel/B&B/apartment to the tablado and back. If you are staying in Buceo, Malvín or Carrasco, transport will not be included and I will let you know a meeting point at the tablado.

  • Tickets to the ¨Tablado¨

  • Interesting information about the Uruguayan Carnival!

Price: 60 USD per person

If you are a solo-traveler, the price will be 120 USD.

3h
EXPERIENCE Murga! 
- Visit a ¨tablado¨, a typical Uruguayan Carnival Show!

I will pick you up at your hotel/B&B/apartment and we will take an UBER to one of the different ¨ensayos¨ in town. We will watch a murga group rehearse in a relaxed atmosphere – at this point the murga groups still do not wear make-up or their costumes - and I will tell you all about the history of murga and of the specific group we are seeing.

 

In general, this is a very good opportunity to catch a glimpse of a typical Uruguayan cultural event. 

Normally, the rehearsals take place at local sports clubs or in some other local institution, so we can usually also buy something to drink and something simple to eat like hamburgesas or choripan. I will also bring my mate for you to try.

After 2.5 – 3h, we will take an UBER back to your lodging.

Date: From January 5th to January 18th

Duration: Approx. 2.5-3h

Number of Participants: 2

Location: At one of the different venues where a Murga group rehearses in Montevideo.

Starting time: The exact pick up time will depend on which rehearsal we will visit - This depends on which day it is and on the final rehearsal venues of each Murga. Normally, rehearsals start between 8 and 9 p.m.

 

Includes:

  • UBER ride from your hotel/B&B/apartment to the rehearsal venue and back. If you are staying in Buceo, Malvín or Carrasco, transport will not be included and I will let you know a meeting point at the tablado.

  • A glass of beer/soft-drink per person

  • Interesting information about the Uruguayan Carnival!

     

Price: 40 USD per person

If you are a solo-traveler, the price will be 80 USD.

EXPERIENCE Murga! 
- Not in Uruguay during the Carnival? Visit an ¨ensayo¨, a Murga´s practice session, during the month of January!
3h

CONTACT US:

Montevideo, Uruguay

experience@uruguay-autentico.com

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