As most of you know I went to Albuquerque earlier this month to Flamenco Festival Internacional. Festivals are intense. Intense can be good, but it can also be, well, fuerte. Preparation can help. So...
1. Choose a festival hosting artists you want to see and learn from.
Artists I admire = inspiration and motivation. Sure, I get a bit nervous at the thought of studying with these most amazing artists, but it usually goes away after awhile.
2. Go with a group of people.
You may know them before. You may not. You may travel with them. You may meet up there. Either way, having a small community within the bigger festival community offers support. Plus it's just so much more fun with other people. Think laughter, lots of laughter, therapeutic laughter.
3. Choose your learning tools.
There are many available.... An audio recording device to help you recall the sounds. A notebook for notes and reflections on class. Going over the choreography or tricky steps with another student after or before class. Getting centered and staying present.
Here I am at the 25th anniversary of the Festival Flamenco Internacional de Albuquerque. Seeing fabulous artists perform every night.
Taking classes from some of them, Pastora Galván and Olga Pericet.
And doing it with friends. The very best way to do it.
I've been wanting to tell you about it all week. I'll definitely tell you more later...
We've been working on jaleos in Pastora's class.
Here is one of the letras we're dancing to and a video of Pastora Galván dancing.
February 26 Saturday Our first day of classes...Nervous as ever to go to Manuel Liñan's class, and I think my nerves were contagious. Sorry, Heather. We were like eager kindergartners on the first day of school arriving 20 minutes early, the first ones there, I don't know if I've ever been the first to arrive. Actually, Manolillo was there and even said hi - we soooo enjoyed class. Went to find the supermarket afterward, and on the way (I hadn't put my jacket on yet; it was warm and we'd just worked hard!) I pass an older woman on the street. Without making eye contact she looks at my clothes and says, "Hija, hace calor pero tampoco para irte así" Haha, I love Spain! Went home to make lunch, rest a bit and review what we'd learned in class. Then off to afternoon class with Marco Flores. Was wonderful to see him again and to thank him in person for the letter of invitation he wrote me to come to the festival.