Saturday's technique class is very helpful, because even though we're learning how to do turns, spot, lines etc, what's key to this class is learning how to make smooth transitions and to know exactly where you are in the dance movement at any moment~~that's an art unto itself! We don't go super fast, but fast enough to make you take notice of what you're doing in the moment and of what you might need to study away from class. The movement piece is important, but what I'm starting to get is that solidifying transitions and smoothly switching from one side to the other, is challening. But, through it, I'm learning how to be more focused and present, and how to trust the process, trust my ability. The palmas class is exceptional, in that I've never learned palmas this way--not just the compas for different palos, but identifying the palos thru music, old school flamenco and new modern stuff. It's refreshing to learn palmas this way, not just clap away. We're encouraged to listen to different kinds of flamenco music, to listen for stuff like double sixes, listen to the guitar's melody, find the base and work from there, question if that's footwork or palmas in a piece--sometimes they sound the same. You have to develop an ear for this stuff. Best parts of the palmas class: Name that Palo! We get into teams and guess what palo Meli is playing. She also does all this incredible footwork while we keep palmas, which again, teaches us how to listen for straights, counter or any other mysterious footwork she may be doing. We also get to go out on the floor and do some footwork, jaleo!
Any negatives? Just that sometimes I personally, can get a little frustrated, cuz sometimes I don't get what's being taught, it takes time to sink in, but I want it NOW! :) Still, I figure as long as I keep going to classes and studying on my own, I'll get it. Peace.
Well stated Vida!
I sometimes think that learning and truly understanding Flamenco is like peeling an onion; you have to pry away so many layers before you can get to the core. You can try to speed you arrival by slicing to the center and focusing only upon dance, but without the careful effort of peeling each layer of skin, ultimately you are at a loss.
I tried to slice to the core, but now I am peeling the layers.
In the past few months, my understanding of Flamenco music and dance has dramatically increased - and I am happily obssessed with learning the many palos and challenging myself to master the rhythms in both my feet and hands.
I cherish and look forward to each and every Saturday because not only am I learning, but I am surrounded by amazing women and an amazing mastermind of a teacher!
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