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The Mexican Hat Dance was named the national dance of Mexico in 1924 in an effort to bring together several different cultures together as one national identity. Since it became the national dance it has also become a symbol of Mexico around the world.
The dance involves a male and a female dancer, with the male working hard to seduce the female during the dance. At first the two dancers flirt, but then the woman's attention is turned away from the man's advances. A joyous dance, the number finishes with the woman accepting the male dancer's courtship, and the two delight the audience with a kiss hidden by the male dancer's hat. Many variations show different levels of sexuality; traditional Mexican culture would have prohibited very suggestive behavior in a public performance, but culture has changed and with it this dance has become increasingly suggestive.
The accompanying music is Mexican folk that was created in the 19th century. Today, Mexicans still proudly and joyously perform the Jarabe Tapatío at various fiestas and other big events.
Famous ballerina Anna Pavlova went on to perform a version of this dance en pointe, and it brought her newfound celebrity in Mexico.