Bailando Sevillanas

The title basically means Sevillanas Dancing.  Sevillanas is what we Brits would call flamenco.  The word flamenco does exist in Spain but how it differs from Sevillanas I am yet to establish.  Anyway.. classes in Bailando Sevillanas began in our village in September and along with a couple of other very brave British ladies we have been meeting regularly every week here...

Valentina showing off her moves in front of the Centro Civico

This is the village community hall/theatre.  It's even got a ticket office hatch thingy.  Very cute.  You just imagine all the people who waited in line scratching at the hatch with their coins as they waited to buy an entrance ticket.

Its not an especially pretty building but it's a very good space for the village, it is used for celebrations like the Halloween party or the New Years eve party and for the putting on of plays and musical evenings and other such entertainments during Cultural Week which happens in May.

These are my dancing shoes

And... it is the venue for our dance practice and will be where we perform in front of the entire village next May.  Our teacher is Encarni and she makes all the moves look very simple, believe me they are not, at least not when we do them.

At the beginning I told myself that I wasn't really going to the classes to just learn the dancing, I wanted to improve my Spanish and also to meet more of the villagers and also integrate a little more into village life.  That is what I said back in September.

Encarni's daughter amusing herself on the stage while we dance
But now.  Well I want to be able to dance all the steps just like Encarni.  I simply love it!  I am trying my best and I plan to practice at home over the Christmas holidays because... well... I really need the practice.

Practicing the arm and hand movements

 This was our last class before the festive break and one of the ladies brought some 'Gloria' with her.

This is basically a home made hooch - very sweet and a little syrupy but entirely delicious and quite potent.  Went down a treat I can tell you... and dare I say it but I thought our dancing was greatly improved.

Encarni has the most expressive hands and in this lesson we are all trying to emulate her graceful movements... with varying degrees of success.  It is not easy.  We try our best.

blimey... I didn't realise I looked like that!

Just when we think we have got the arms sorted we have to do the steps as well!

At this point it doesn't always go smoothly.  Listen to the music Encarni shouts.  This doesn't actually help.  I had no idea it was going to be so hard.  It feels a bit like tapping your head while rubbing your belly.  I couldn't every do that either!

It's a different culture and a different type of music.  Listen here and you will get the idea.  This isn't the exact arrangement that we are dancing to but its along the same lines.  I started off by hating the music but now I am beginning to hear a melody rather than just wailing and noise - yeah I will understand if you can't fathom it.  It is very different from anything I would normally listen to.  Of course practicing at home has subjected Steve to the music too... I don't think its ever going to be on his favourite list.

We are now starting to talk about the dresses we will have to wear for the performance and we will have flowers in our hair too... and very Spanish makeup... oooh la la it's going to be fun... I don't think we are going to look like this.... but we can dream (and of course I will be posting photographs next year).


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