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.
An interview with flamenco dancer Emilio Ochando and a video:
I can't wait to ask Emilio a million things once he gets here. I asked him some questions last year. But I have so many more! Like how did he get to be so good? And who are his favorite dancers? And what are his favorite practice techniques and strategies?
I know he has a lot to tell us.
So I warmed him up with a few quick questions the other day. And here is what he had to say.
Qué debe saber la gente que quiere aprender a bailar flamenco? Deben saber que no deja de ser un arte y que ello te lleva a emociones. Tambien le tienes que sumar la constancia y ganas.
What should people who want to learn flamenco know? They should know that it will never stop being an art and that it will bring up your emotions. Also you need to be consistent and approach it with enthusiasm.
What motivates you to continue? You, and dancers and artists like you who find the art form exciting and challenging and this in turn makes you want to improve “your art.” I guess to be fair, it’s also the art form itself. Sometimes I hate it because it can be so unforgiving, and sometimes I love it when I see beautiful dance or hear beautiful music and cante. Lots of contradictions with this art form.