A couple of weeks ago, Virigina, a Flamenco Tour alum, sent me the following account of her time on the Flamenco Tour to Jerez. If you're curious about what happens on the Flamenco Tour, read on...
My Trip to Jerez
by: Virginia O'Hanlon
I have danced and taught Afro Cuban, Haitian and Brazilian dance for many years. I'm the sort of explorer who likes to "go to the source" so I have gone to these countries many times on dance/study trips. There were a few great trips, some ok, and two really miserable experiences.
I'm fairly new to flamenco -had 2 years in at the time of this trip- but became intrigued by the "por fiesta" dances so I started looking around for ways to study in Spain, particularly Jerez. I discovered Laura's trips, and it seemed like a structure that would work well for me, so I went last October. It was without a doubt one of the best, richest experiences that I've had, and here are some reasons why.
Going to Spain was something she'd always wanted to do.
But life kept getting in the way
And then one day she realized that life wasn't going to let up,
that the perfect moment wasn't going to arrive,
that the time to go to Spain to study flamenco was now.
She realized waiting any longer made no sense.
For thirty years Stella had been wanting to travel to Spain. In the fall of 2013, she finally decided to make the trip. And she did it by joining the FlamencoTour.
"How scary it would be to come alone,"
"Once you come back [home] then you realize what a precious jewel you had ... and I'm jealous of people who are going to go."
Watch the video below to hear Stella talk about her experiences in Jerez.
Today I want to show you a video of Becky and Aida from the rooftop of our apartment in the Barrio San Miguel, an important flamenco neighborhood in Jerez.
They describe their time in Jerez together.
They talk about being in bulerías class, In the words of Becky,
"You soon realize that you have the support of everybody in the room. Not only your fellow travelers, but everybody else who’s there. Everything is there. The music. The singing. The jaleos. The palmas. You can really have some amazing breakthroughs."
And they talk about the togetherness of the group,
"We were on the same page, everybody," Aida says.
They talk about other things too. Hear what they have to say in the video below.
"I'm proud of myself," says Gay.
And she should be.
Gay came with me to Jerez after having taken only a few flamenco classes, EVER! She took one workshop with Ricardo López in Portland. That's all.
And then she decided to join me in Spain.
Watch below to find out about her experience in Jerez.
Amy talked to her six kids and husband in the States regularly while on the Flamenco Tour in Spain. Thank goodness for Skype!
Watch the video below to find out what Jerez was like for a mother of six adopted children.
"We all came from different walks of life. We had different experiences, and yet, the flamenco was what connected us." - Jackie Villegas-Maclin Watch the video below, and find out why a trip to Jerez was something Jackie, a flamenco teacher from Kirkland, Washington, will never forget ...
In the video below Pat, a very beginner and first time traveler, talks about what the Flamenco Tour was like for her. The video was made after her first trip to Jerez. She came back with me a year later too and has already signed up for next fall's trip!
She inspires me just about every time I see her, or even just think about her. Watch the video to find out why.