[PhiladelphiaDANCE.org Listserv] Flamenco Classes begin Saturday, September 8!
Pasión y Arte
info at pasionyarteflamenco.org
Wed Sep 5 10:45:37 EDT 2018
*Fall Flamenco classes begin September 8*
Join us at the Overbrook Garage Studio and learn Flamenco! PyA Artistic
Director Elba Hevia y Vaca will be teaching various levels of Flamenco
starting on September 8!
*Fall 2018 Class Schedule and Description*
*Basic Beginner/Beginner: *
Saturday- 11-12:30pm- Tientos/Tangos
Thursday (with Sarah Wigman)- 7-8:30pm- Tangos
More about Tientos:
Tientos, a slow cante jondo music and dance that was first developed by the
singer Enrique el Mellizo (1848-1906) as an expressive variation of the
Tangos. Poet /Writer Garcia Lorca considered Tientos to be almost
liturgical in its solemnity. Traditional Tientos verses set a dark mood and
have to do with loss, unrequited love, imprisonment, longing for freedom
and other very serious messages that haveto do with race and color. A very
wonderful way to get in touch with your inner voice and mind/body/heart
More about Tangos:
Some Tango forms can be traced back to the Moorsih Zambras also its roots
lie in the way African and Caribbean music blended with Spanish music in 18
th and 19th century Latin America. As Tangos became a part of flamenco in
the 19th Century certain aspects of older forms were folded into it. Tangos
are sensual, playful, earthy, fun, grounded and very feminine. There are
variety of tangos verses of different lengths and subject matter, but
primarily it is about celebrating life.
Objectives for the Basic Beginner student:
- Introduce and integrate the teaching of history and genealogy
holistically with embodied bodies through movement and rhythm training.
- We will study palos (rhythm family) of “Tientos” and “Tangos through
simple movement, rhythm training and palmas (hand clapping).
- Understand “colocacion,” the Flamenco posture, the concept of duality,
reaching for the heavens with the upper body and finding the earth through
the footwork and look at the intergration of the core in relationship to
upper and lower body movements.
- To develop the Flamenco “floreo” hand movements that are specific to
flamenco through the excercising of the wrist, palm and fingers.
- To find the Flamenco aesthetic of the head and arms through specific
“Braseo” arm excercises.
- To engage our hips and upper body through specific flamenco hip
- Look at sequences that integrate all these Flamenco components into
Tientos and Tangos “palos” (flamenco rhythm families)
- Study the basic Flamenco footwork by using specific exercises and
explore all the different sounds that are made with the different parts of
the feet, Planta (ball), tacon (heel), golpe (whole foot) to create rhythm
- Incorporate sequences of footwork adding the body and arm movements to
the “palo” of Tientos and Tangos rhythms.
Saturday- 12:30-2pm- Seguiriyas/Martinete (Technique/Choreography)
Monday- 7-8:30pm- Seguiriyas/Martinete (Choreography)
Wednesday- 7-8:30pm- Seguiryas/Bulerias (Technique/Choreography)
More about Seguiriyas:
Derived from Flamenco’s earliest root forms, the “tonas,” early to mid 17th
century. Seguiriyas is one of the oldest and deepest forms. Slow,
majestic, and tragic, Seguiriyas is the most “jondo” of cante jondo (deep
song.) It’s verse focus is on tragedy, inconsolable sorrow, and pain. Its
unusual rhythm structure gives the form its unique, uneven pattern and its
expressive power. It is a highly personal form and many artists associated
with the style have created their own extraordinary styles. Personally it
has been one of the most healing palos through my trajectory as a flamenco
artist, each time I explore the form in my body there is always something
new to uncover and unleash in myself. I can’t wait to share my explorations
of this palo on a technical historical and especially the healing elements
Objectives for Advanced Beginner/Intermediate student:
- Understand and introduce the rhythmic structure of Seguiriyas through
palmas, paseos and various marcajes (marking steps).
- Continue the strengthening of the student’s familiarity with the
compas (rhythm structure) using more difficult footwork technique and
creating more complex arm movements and coordinating them with the footwork.
- Further understanding of the “colocacion” (Flamenco alignment) and how
it relates to the movement efficiency within the Flamenco vocabulary.
- Understanding the relationship between the core support and neutra
pelvis placement in relationship to Flamenco “colocacion”.
- Understanding of the “floreo”(hand movement) and “brazeo” (arm
sequence) technique and the relationship to the whole body.
- Developing support leg and foot strength, and stability in order to
accomplish the complex footwork patterns.
- Understanding and demonstrating concepts of body organization such as
breath support, head and hip placement in relationship to the Flamenco
technique and philosophy.
- Understanding of the communication between the singer, dancer and
guitarist to the Seguiriyas rhythm.
- Further understanding how energy is directed in one’s body and
projected out into space through the “brazeo” and “floreo” movement and
into the floor through footwork patterns.
*Class Location and Cost*
Where: Overbrook Garage Studio
6411 Overbrook Avenue
Philadelphia, PA 19151
Cost: Drop in $15; 6 class card $78 (to be used within three months)
Student and professional discounts available upon request.
For more information visit www.pasionyarteflamenco.org or email Elba Hevia
y Vaca at elba at pasionyarteflamenco.org.
.*A brief history of Flamenco*
Flamenco’s origins come from a mixture of many cultures, the most important
being Muslim, Jewish, Indo-Pakistani and Byzantine. Many flamencologos
(Flamenco historians) believe that Flamenco as we know it today did not
develop until the sixteenth century, when the kingdom of Castilla decided
to rid Spain of minority groups in an effort to propagate pureness of race
and religion. All Jews and Muslims that refused to convert to Christianity
were expelled from the country and all gypsies who would not leave the open
road and settle down were expelled as well. As a consequence, these three
persecuted cultures, with very little in common, found themselves united
against a common foe. It is probable that from the common life of these
persecuted peoples that the first semblances of Flamenco as we know it
began. Muslim, Jewish, Indian, and Christian religious and folk music
blended, developing over the years into a musical form all its own.
Many historians believe the world “Flamenco” is a mispronunciation of the
Arabic words “felag” and “mengun” which means fugitive peasants. It is
likely that this term was borrowed from the Arabs (which was the common
language in Andalusia at that time) and applied to all persecuted people
who fled to the mountains. Through usage in Spanish, “felagmengu” was
transformed into “Flamenco” until the term Flamenco was adopted by the
fugitives themselves and in turn applied to their music. The main form at
that time, was the “cante jondo” which expressed the suffering of these
outlawed oppressed people, who through the years were condemned to serve in
the galleys, in chain gangs, and in the Spanish army. They were prohibited
to speak their own languages and many were killed. Somehow their spirit
remained unbroken, and their mode of expression-- their Flamenco-
-developed to magnificent heights throughout the centuries, culminating in
the Café Cantante period of the last century.
Flamenco dance as we now know it is an expressive art form that has a
ritual significance. It is a mixture and fusion with elements from several
different cultures. Therefore, Flamenco has a diverse range of melodies,
rhythms, and structures that together express the deeper and more complex
feelings of the human being with each “palo” expressing an emotion.
Today, Flamenco consists of:
Toque- guitar playing
Jaleo- rhythm accentuation and reciting
*About PyA Artistic Director Elba Hevia y Vaca*
Elba Hevia y Vaca is the Artistic and Executive Director and Founder of
Pasión y Arte.
Born in La Paz, Bolivia, Elba Hevia y Vaca began her study of classical
Spanish dance at the age of five. She later studied and danced with master
dancer Ana Martinez of the Ana Martinez Flamenco Dance Company in D.C., and
danced with Washington’s Raquel Peña Spanish Dance Company, appearing as a
soloist at various venues throughout the U.S. In Philadelphia, she
continued her study of modern dance, jazz, and contact improvisation from
various Philadelphia artists. In 2000, Hevia y Vaca founded Pasión y Arte
out of a strong and intensely personal conviction that highly-stylized
traditional Spanish flamenco dance is a perfect vessel to empower women.
These values have been reflected in the seven original, critically
acclaimed works she has created for PyA, and in the numerous grants,
fellowships and accolades awarded to Hevia y Vaca and PyA under her
direction. She conducts master classes throughout the US, teaches various
levels of Flamenco at her Overbrook Garage Studio in West Philadelphia, as
well as being an Adjunct at Franklin & Marshall College, Drexel University,
and Temple University.
“I started studying classical Spanish dance at age 5 and was introduced to
Flamenco at the age of 13 and immediately fell in love with the music and
the way it spoke to me. As I look back, I understand why it pulled at my
heart and spirit. It allowed me to reconnect with my heart and body, the
part that I had shut down while growing up in a very difficult family
environment in my home of La Paz, Bolivia. Throughout my journey as a
dancer/teacher/choreographer, my interest in Flamenco as a vehicle for
healing and the empowerment of women became a necessity. I have been
interested in the celebration of women as the protagonists of their own
story, and not being reduced to stereotypical roles as the seductress, or a
sexual or love object. Through my healing journey as a Flamenco artist, I
continue to look and challenge these historical roles that have been placed
on women in the Flamenco art form and in the various Latino cultures in
general, and now as we embark on uncertain ground I feel more than ever an
urgency to continue my exploration within this healing and empowering art
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