Ok, so it's the final interview with Mercedes...for now that is.  And today we get into some of the nitty-gritty. Earlier Mercedes told me that she encountered a lot of problems on her way to becoming a flamenco dancer.

This got me thinking.  Wondering about those obstacles and what they were.  But more importantly, wondering about how she handled them.

Immediately I thought about the flamenco world and it can be easy to feel left out.  How it can be easy to feel like you don't belong.  For me at least...because I let myself.  I wondered if any of that went on for Mercedes.  Especially as she is from Jerez, where people have some strong opinions about flamenco.  And how it is to be done.  And who can do it.

No one in Mercedes's family had anything to do with flamenco before she started dancing.  They still don't.  They don't even like it.

So, I wondered how it must have felt for her.  And outsider, going into such a closed community.

I learned that Mercedes, well,

She just doesn't let stuff get to her...

Me dijiste antes que te encontrabas mucha zancadilla en tu camino a ser solista.  Cuáles son algunas de los problemas y como los superaste?  Ha sido difícil para tí ser bailaora en Jerez viniendo de una familia que no tenía nada que ver con el flamenco?  Ha sido difícil sentirte aceptada?

La verdad es que todo trabajo tiene un con que.... Pero en el artístico creo que es un poco peor.  Es muy cerrado.  Cuesta mucho trabajo entrar en los sitios y esto afecta muchísimo en tu vida diaria porque el artista tiene muchas inquietudes y quiere superarse día tras día y si no te sientes bien contigo misma es malísimo.

Me he encontrado muchos obstáculos y me los sigo encontrando, pero se supera con el trabajo diario y nunca mirando a los demás. Nunca lo mire así.

Soy una persona que voy a mi bola, y no he buscado el ser aceptada.

Si lo soy pues bien y si no que le voy hacer?   No se puede forzar nada en la vida.  Las cosas vienen como tienen que venir.

You told me before that you encountered a lot of problems on the road to becoming a soloist.  What are some of the problems and how did you overcome them?  Was it hard for you being a flamenco dancer in Jerez coming from a non-flamenco family?  Did you have a hard time being accepted?

The truth is that all work has its issues... but I believe artistic work is a bit worse.  It is very closed.  It takes a lot of effort to get accepted into places, and this has a big effect on your everyday life because artists have a lot of aspirations, and they want to improve everyday, and if you don't feel good about yourself it's horrible.

I have been faced with many obstacles, and I continue to encounter them, but you overcome them through daily work and without paying attention to others.  I never looked at it this way.

I am a person who does her own thing, and I haven't tried to be accepted.

If I am, great and if not, What am I going to do?  Things in life cannot be forced.  Things happen as they're meant to happen.


She is such an inspiration.  I'd love to know what you think.  Let me know in the comments.

If you've missed the previous interviews and want to read them, follow the links below.

Interview 1  Interview 2  Interview 3  Interview 4

Today is the last day to sign up for The Flamenco Tour to Jerez this fall.  Want to join us?  The details are here.