The Danza de las tijeras (Scissors Dance) is an original dance from one of the deepest highland regions of Peru. The dance is an impressive manifestation of physical art and skill, but to the Andean man it represents a complex ritual. The scissors dance takes its name from the pair of polished iron rods, resembling scissors blades, wielded by each dancer in his right hand. Together with musicians, the dancers perform a choreographed duel of step-dancing, acrobatics and increasingly demanding movements
The origin of the dance is shrouded in mystery but it likely began before Spanish colonization in Quechua communities in the southern Central Andes of Peru. It was used to celebrate, reveal and worship Andean deities. Under Spanish rule, dancers were persecuted. Colonial authorities considered them sorcerers and children of the devil.