Published on February 27, 2015

Film, TV and Music Internships in Colombia

With rich musical traditions, large national television stations and a growing film scene, Colombia offers exciting opportunities for a film, TV and music intern abroad. Get to know Colombia’s rich cultural traditions while working with entertainment industry experts in Medellín, a flavorful city known for its high quality of life and innovation.


Film, TV and Music Internships in Colombia


During a film, TV and music internship in Medellín, interns are able to discover the beauty of Colombian culture within the entertainment industry. Previous interns have worked in roles with Colombian television, local production companies and Colombian record labels to learn about the industry first-hand. The real-world experience in Colombia’s entertainment sector while living in a rich, colorful culture is the opportunity of a lifetime.


Medellín has made a complete turnaround in the last 20 years. Through economic growth and development, the city has been transformed into 2014’s best Latin American city to live in, tying with Santiago Chile, according to consultancy Indra. No longer characterized by violence, the city is known for its strong public services, security and sustainable development. In 2013 Wall Street Journal also named Medellín its innovative city of the year due to modern and well-planned public transportation systems, social innovation, infrastructure and technological investments.


Medellín also has famously excellent weather. No matter what time of year interns start their internship, it feels great outside. Known as the “city of eternal springs,” Medellín’s weather temperature year-round sits between 60 and 90 degrees Fahrenheit.


Surrounded by seven hills, Colombia’s second-largest city Medellín is located in the Aburrá Valley among the Andes mountains. Some 11% of the national economy is produced within the city, which boasts 3.5mn people. Locals are often called either Antioqueños after their home province Antioquia or paisas rather than Medellínenses.


Paisas hold a great deal of regional pride. The term derives from the word paisano, or “fellow countryman”, and implies someone from an area encompassing the Colombian states of Antioquia, Caldas, Risaralda, Quindio and a few towns of Tolima and Valle del Cauca. Paisa is also a cultural identity that indicates a distinct way to speak, dress and live. One example of paisa culture in Medellín is the prevalence of using small neighborhood stores and markets for basic products, rather than relying on major supermarkets.


Film, TV and Music Internships in Colombia


Colombia is known for its rich musical traditions, making it a prime location for an internship in music. Working in Colombia’s music industry will offer interns a unique, insider’s perspective on the national music production scene. Moreover, while working in the industry interns will have the chance to better understand the musical traditions that define the nation.


Colombia has generated the most widespread musical genre in Latin America: cumbia. With roots in coastal Colombia and the slave trade, cumbia has influenced music from the entire region. Cumbia started in Colombia as a blend of traditional Caribbean and Afrocolombian music. The dancing style for cumbia music is a short shuffle step, a way slaves danced because their legs were shackled. The one-two beat and distinct maraca rhythm characterizes the music along with a beating drum. Traditional cumbia artists include Los Graduados and Los Black Stars.


The Colombian big band music porro started out as a subgenre of cumbia music. Though bands are structured like European military bands, the music actually comes from Sinú River folkloric celebrations. Porro Palitiao and Porro Tapao are two types of folkloric Porro.


Medellín is an important musical city in the country. The city was recognized as the Colombian capital of tango after Carlos Gardel died in an airplane accident in the city in July of 1935. The city even has a museum dedicated to the legendary Argentine tango singer. The museum has various objects of Gardel and other famous tango singers.


Television in Colombia serves as one of the fundamental means of mass communication. Along with having local channels in major cities, the big national channels in the country include Señal Colombia, Canal Capital, Canal Institucional, Canal Uno, Caracol Televisión and RCN Televisión. Meanwhile, Colombian film has risen in the ranks in recent years, with more and more high-quality films being produced in the country.



Film, TV and Music Internships in Colombia


An internship in film, TV and music in Medellín will not only build professional experience, but also give interns the opportunity to make huge leaps with their Spanish, an important language in the global economy. With some 320 million speakers, Spanish is the third most commonly spoken language in the world. The Intern Group program provides optional Spanish language classes for all levels at Universidad EAFIT in the upscale El Poblado neighborhood. Colombians are known for their clear, easy-to-understand Spanish, making the country an ideal place to learn and speak the language. During a film, TV and music internship in Colombia, interns will use Spanish at their internships while exploring Medellín and surrounding areas.


Accepting an internship in Colombian music, TV or film will help you understand Colombian culture from all angles. It’s the best way to get real-world experience while learning about and living in a new culture.


Apply now and boost your career!


Sources: Wikipedia, NPR’s Alt.Latino, AFP


Photo 1. based on Barranquilla Carnaval Parade 2014 070 by Team at Studios, CC-by-2.0

Photo 2. based on Medellín Noctámbula by Iván Erre Jota, CC-by-2.0

Photo 3. based on Medellín by Miguel Olaya, CC-by-2.0

The author
Elizabeth Trovall
After short stints in Argentina and Belize, Elizabeth is finishing up her third year in Santiago, Chile. Elizabeth writes about international internships, life abroad and professional development for The Intern Group. She also reports on politics, business and culture in Latin America for public radio and print media. An Austin, Texas native, Elizabeth first left home to earn her journalism degree from the Reynolds Institute of Journalism at the University of Missouri. Besides her friends and family, she misses live music and Mexican food the most.

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