Tuesday, January 4, 2011

A Few of my Flamenco Secrets

Hot-Damn Flamenco. Whoever in this life, watches flamenco. The answer is "No one."

Having said the above, I should just sign off, but hard head, me, I'll persist. Flamenco has been my life long passion. I learned to dance Flamenco from the gypsies on the beaches outside Algeceris, Spain during the Korean War. (The war during the early '50's ..... not this thing they are going through now). I still consider myself a purist, although there's always a modern movement in every art form.

My new header is a Flamenco guitar that cries in the closet. I don't play the sacred little instrument. To achieve that would require constant practice and I chose dancing as long as the old bode allows. The picture to the left was taken last year.

Traditionally, the guitar accompanies dancers and has only been around a little over a hundred years. Pre-guitar, there was keeping rhythm of hands (clapping) or a cane (stick) striking the ground. A few dances still use the pounding of an anvil for it's rhythm as the gypsies were usually traveling smithies.

Male dancers used to beat out a rhythm with their heavy footwork and the grace of the upper body was left to the women. Carmen Amaya was one of the first female gypsy dancers to put on trousers and dance the frenzied footwork. Even when I started Flamenco, 60 years ago, women still concentrated on body movement and left the heavy footwork to the men.

There's very little interest in Flamenco in Montana..... land of cowboys and honky-tonks. For one thing, the learning takes time and dedication and it's just damn hard work in the beginning. I carry on my art for myself with a few faithful followers. I'm starting a kid's program this summer. Kids just do it, without all the hangups.

There. I've opened the door and shared my passion with you, dear bloggy friends. Now you can share your passion with me and others. We all have them, if they are for real or only wannabes. Let's share!!!!


  1. Wow, I'm impressed that you can do that! I've always found flamenco dancing fascinating when I see it in movies on TCM. It's got to be difficult!

    My passion? I'm a wannabe photographer and wannabe writer. Shhh...don't tell anyone!

  2. Wow!! Flamenco dancing... you amaze me!

    My passion? Photography and cooking. I would love to write a cookbook.

  3. Just looking at the photo makes me dizzy!

  4. Joaquin Cortes!! Oh he's hot!! He's gorgeous!!! I like him!!! :-)

    Look at you though!!! Wonderful!!! May you blaze a trail of sizzling flamenco in
    Montana!! Take care

  5. I envy anyone who can dance because I was born with 2 left feet :-)

  6. So that is how you keep such a svelte figure? Love the idea of kids doing it. They are so quick and don't worry how they look doing something.
    My passions seem to come and go. Wish I could focus on one but I don't.

  7. Dear Empty Nester,
    I don't have to tell anyone..... it shows on your blog that you are a delightful writer and take eye popp'n pictures. Love all your family pictures.

    With your talent, you WILL write that cookbook and I'll be first in line to get my autographed copy. Your blog is addictive.

    Mrs. Tuna,
    Me too, when I don't spot. Thanks for stopping and commenting.

    Old Kitty,
    Ahhh Haa, I bet you''ve been following Cortes on YT on the videos where he takes his shirt off....

    Sure you can dance. Probably haven't had the right teacher.

    You are so perseptive. Yes, that's it..... kids haven't reached that self-conscious stage yet. I see that self conscious look on especially men students and then they can't learn. Kids don't care. Thanks for pointing that out.

  8. Mmmmmm, I like your header. It is sad for that beauty to be crying in the closet. I love the high bright tone of the flamenco guitar and the fast quick rhythm of the music.

    This photo of you in dance is absolutely over the top! I think it would make an awesome Wanna Buy A Duck header picture!

    What a wonderful idea to offer classes to little ones. I’m for that!

    My passion: I have many likes. I think my passion is just being Mother and Nana. Sounds corny but it’s true. My whole being is intertwined with family. I don’t mind that.

    Manzi, keep dancing,

  9. What a gorgeous photo! A friend of mine dances flamenco in Los Angeles. It is her passion too. Nature and animals are passions of mine. Reading is a hobby. I'm also becoming passionate about the writing, photography and communication of blogging.--Inger

  10. Manzi: Hot Damn! I also love the new header.

  11. Were you in the service during the war? Every post is just like a little treasure. We learn something new about you.
    My passion is writing. I don't have all the proper formatting, but I do enjoy it.
    My other passion is learning how to be married. *lol*

  12. I love flamenco! Saw it a few years back at the Brighton Festival!

    My passion is reading. But I also like swimming - though I haven't been close enough to a swimming pool for ages :-(

    Happy New Year!

  13. Dear Gerry,
    You make the most loveable Mother and Grandmother I've ever seen. Truly. But you do have your talents and no one can argue that they too, are the finest. You are blessed, my dear.
    I bet you can play guitar too. Have you ever tried Flamenco. It is sooo difficult for me and as I said, it takes constant practice. But I do so much honor those artists who can.

    Canyon Girl,
    You have multiple, yet related talents and they all show in your blog. I feel comfortable visiting you. You're great

    Thanks.... I think I recall that you play guitar. eh what???

    LOL..... learning to be a wife will go on for some time. I love your writing. Don't bog it down with all the proper stuff unless that's your absolute choice for certain writings. Your writing flows like conversation and endures people to you.

    Northern Teacher,
    Better find that pool. Yes, your love of books. Read all you can while your eyes are bright and seeing well. I have to rely on my kindle and crank the words way up so I can see now. My regret is .... wish I'd done more reading when the orbs were good.

    Thank you bloggy friends. Love you all.. Manzanita.

  14. Thank you, Manzanita.
    I learned a little guitar when I was very young. Daddy had a little flattop Gibson as far back as I can remember, a G-45. I don't play well, have not studied nor practiced it much. I have never had my hands on a flamenco guitar. I wish I had one.
    I admire anyone who has dedicated his or her life in practice enough to become an artist, whether it is music, song or dance. You have fallen into that category and it is obvious that you have enjoyed it. I am glad.

  15. Ha! Shows you how cultured I am...I always thought it was pronounced "Flamingo" dancing. What a turd I am.

    Yeah, I'd think you'd be hard pressed to find those sort of dancers in your neck of the woods. Wouldn't hurt to bring a bit of the gypsy way of life to your state. After all, cowboys were a type of gypsy once. Why not?

  16. Manzi, that's very trés cool that you're going to teach kids to flamingo. I wouldn't be surprised if one or more kids become passionate flamingo dancers.

    My passion? Haven't found it yet. Got my whole lifetime to seek it though. :-)

  17. I love dance. Watching and doing. I love watching flamenco, but never tried it. Call me a Strange Scorpio :) I took ballet for years and years. And I can still do simple things, nothing complicated. Great photo of you.

  18. Saw your comment on my blog about the dog. Yes, that's my dog, Penelope. She's a guide dog school dropout. Did you notice she's wearing eyeglasses? Maybe I'll write a dog blog post about her.