Testimonies

The testimonies are sorted by publication date, showing the new ones first.
Click on to sort by witness, to sort alphabetically by musical piece title, or to sort by publication date.


The Paper Boat (El barco de papel)

Author:
Julio Numhauser, popularised by the band Amerindios.
Testimony by:
José Selín Carrasco Vargas
« While we were imprisoned in Melinka, this song was sung every time that one of us was released. I remember a fellow prisoner nicknamed Bigote Molina (Moustache Molina) singing the song when we were going to Tres Álamos, from where we would be released a few days later. »
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Published on: 23 September 2017


Las mañanitas

Author:
Manuel M. Ponce
Testimony by:
Beatriz Bataszew Contreras
Place & date:
Campamento de Prisioneros, Tres Álamos, December 1974 - May 1976
« Normally we would sing when they locked us up in the barracks, from seven or eight at night until eight or nine in the morning. Sometimes the guards would come in but didn’t stay. It was our act. »
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Published on: 08 November 2016


Lucía

Author:
Joan Manuel Serrat
Testimony by:
Beatriz Bataszew Contreras
Place & date:
Campamento de Prisioneros, Tres Álamos, December 1974 - May 1976
« Tres Álamos was a more “normal” camp, even though we never had a trial. There was a lot of music, it was sort of ritualistic. There were days when we put more enthusiasm into it, on Saturdays or Sundays after the visits, although I’m not all that sure. »
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Published on: 08 November 2016


Zamba of my Hope (Zamba de mi esperanza)

Author:
Luis H. Profili
Testimony by:
Edgardo Carabantes Olivares
« Horacio Carabantes Olivares, my brother, was locked up in January 1975 at the Maipo regiment of Valparaíso, with a large group of male and female prisoners, all arrested by the DINA. »
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Published on: 07 November 2016


The Internationale

Author:
Eugène Pottier (lyrics) and Pierre Degeyter (music). Popularised by Quilapayún in 1970s Chile.
Testimony by:
Ana María Jiménez
Place & date:
Villa Grimaldi, April 1975
« In April 1975, the triumph in Vietnam was celebrated. We heard about it through a comrade who went to the bathroom and found a piece of the week’s newspaper. It was so beautiful for us to be there, having shouted so often for Vietnam at demonstrations. »
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Published on: 20 October 2016


We Shall Prevail (Venceremos)

Author:
Claudio Iturra (lyrics) and Sergio Ortega (music)
Testimony by:
Lucía Chirinos
Place & date:
« The parish priest at Buen Pastor played the accordion. He played so beautifully. Because I played the piano, I asked him if I could borrow it. “I’ll lend it to you” he said. Discreetly I began to learn “Venceremos”, “La Internacional”, the National Anthem and the Anthem of the Police. »
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Published on: 25 September 2016


The Little Fence (La rejita)

Author:
lyrics: collective creation; music: “Jálame la pitita” by Luis Abanto Morales (Peruvian polka)
Testimony by:
Lucía Chirinos
Place & date:
« Let’s get going, would say “the lizards”, as we called the policemen because they dress all in green. I looked and looked so I wouldn’t forget anything, because I didn’t know how many years I would be locked up for. I was emotional too: one gets frightened. »
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Published on: 25 September 2016


Dona Nobis Pacem

Author:
Text from Agnus Dei (Roman Catholic Mass); music by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Testimony by:
Lucía Chirinos
Place & date:
« Music was always present in my family. My dad played the violin and my mum the piano. When I was a child, my mum sent us to dance and piano lessons. I also learnt at the Evangelical Church and sang on the radio. My husband Mario played the guitar very well and had a wonderful tenor voice. »
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Published on: 25 September 2016


Today I Sing for the Sake of Singing (Hoy canto por cantar)

Author:
Nydia Caro and Riccardo Cerratto
Testimony by:
Beatriz Bataszew Contreras
Place & date:
« I have never been a great music listener. Nevertheless, before the coup I used to listen to Nueva Canción, especially Quilapayún and Rolando Alarcón. I also liked cumbias, to fool around. We would dance and have fun. On the other hand, and this is more due to my family, I have always liked classical music, particularly Tchaikovsky. »
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Published on: 13 September 2016


Ode to Joy (Himno a la alegría)

Author:
original by Friedrich von Schiller (lyrics) and Ludwig van Beethoven (music). Free version in Spanish by Amado Regueiro Rodríguez, aka Orbe (lyrics) y Waldo de los Ríos (music), popularised in Chile by Miguel Ríos.
Testimony by:
Luis Madariaga
Place & date:
« In prison we would sing this when a comrade was released or sent to exile. It was a powerful source of strength, solidarity and ironclad brotherhood, created during those long months in captivity, seeking an outlet for our hearts. I believe that that experience left a mark on all of us. »
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Published on: 05 August 2016