Hola Flamenco Followers! Welcome to our second edition of the Flamenco ¡Si! Newsletter!
For those of you just joining us, this newsletter is a monthly publication which will come out on the third Wednesday of every month. Founded and managed for many years by Teresa Torkanowsky and Carrie Hood, editing has now been passed on to Ingrid Adrianza and Daniella Santoro.
For Artists, this newsletter is here for your promotional needs, information and contacts.
For Flamenco Enthusiasts, this newsletter is here to inform, inspire, and educate about all things flamenco in New Orleans.
Please note our new features, a collection of current Flamenco artist bios (which will be permanently accessible on our blog) , and our “Vicarious Flamenco” column in which we share our thoughts and reviews of past flamenco events.
We hope to provide more opportunities for collaboration and commitment to sustaining our passionate community of flamenco artists here in New Orleans.
Don’t forget to visit our blog, where all newsletters will be posted and archived, and you can easily link to venue websites, teacher bios etc. Please visit us and register! flamencosinola.wordpress.com . Here are the current classes, events, and news of Flamenco in the Crescent City!
Table of Contents
Classes in Session/Upcoming Classes
Classes in Session
New Orleans Dance Academy
5956 Magazine Street
Beginners and Advanced Beginners with Micaela Paule
Thursdays (on going)
Intermediate and Advanced Intermediate with Micaela Paule
Tuesdays (on going)
Dance and Choreography with live Guitarist
Flamenco Basics and Beyond the Basics with Eliza LlewellynNew 10-Week FLAMENCO Series for beginner through intermediate levels to start in January! Saturdays, January 11 – March 29 At Dance Quarter, 1719 Toledano Street
FLAMENCO BEYOND THE BASICS, 1:30 – 2:45pm/ FLAMENCO BASICS, 2:45 – 4:00pm
Workshop Fee & Registration details coming soon!
Red flamenco skirt, with black trimmed single ruffle made in Spain (D’Pertiñez), size Medium. Excellent condition. Can be used for practice or performance. For more information, contact Eliza [firstname.lastname@example.org or (504) 421-3517.
Dancers and Artists Bios
We are blessed to have some incredibly talented and passionate dancers, musicians, and teachers here in New Orleans!
Eliza Llewellyn has always been enamored of dance, initiating her studies in ballet at the age of three in her hometown of New Orleans. Her flamenco training began in New Mexico under Maria Benitez, Martin Santangelo and Soledad Barrio, and later in Mexico with Raul Salcedo and Marisol Moreno. In 2002 she moved to Spain to pursue more advanced studies at the Centro Flamenco de Estudios Escenicos Mario Maya in Granada as one of 42 dancers selected for the program. She later relocated to Seville to continue her training under Israel Galvan, Pastora Galvan and Yolanda Heredia. Most recently she has studied in Madrid at the renowned flamenco academy Amor de Dios with artists such as Alfonso Losa and Miguel Cañas, among others.
Relocating to the Bay Area in 2005 was a turning point for Eliza. While training with Melissa Cruz, Fanny Ara and Carola Zertuche, she received her first professional performance experience. In 2006 she was invited to join Theatre Flamenco of San Francisco, directed by Carola Zertuche, performing locally and in the 2007 San Francisco Ethnic Dance Festival. Today, Eliza is a member of the Juan Siddi Flamenco Theater Company of Santa Fe, New Mexico, appearing on tours throughout the US and with their 2008, 2012 & 2013 Santa Fe summer seasons. As a company member of Theatre Flamenco of San Francisco and of the Juan Siddi Flamenco Theatre Company, Eliza has had the honor of sharing the stage with artists such as Jose Valle “Chuscales”, Gaspar Rodriguez, Mayte Maya, Kina Mendez, Coral de los Reyes and Jose Anillo, She has taught in Mexico and looks forward to sharing her love for flamenco with her students in New Orleans.
Micaela Paule has over thirty years professional dance experience as a dancer, choreographer and director. Micaela received the Tribute to the Classical Arts,Best Ethnic Dance Presentation 2009, she has served as a juror for the Junior Philharmonic Dance Auditions, was commissioned to choreograph for Renverse Ballet Company and has taught numerous flamenco workshops for children and adults. Other professional dance credits include five years as company member of Alianza Flamenca, company coach and lead soloist for Teresa Torkanowsky’s ” Ole Flamenco Ole” and company coach/soloist for Ballet Del Arte Espanol. She also spent 13 years as soloist and choreographer with, New Orleans premier character company,Komenka Ethnic Dance and Music Ensemble, with which she toured internationally. Micaela has been contracted for numerous commercials and movies including Interview with a Vampire. Micaela has also performed locally with Ballet Hysell, Loyola Ballet, Jefferson Ballet, Jefferson Performing Arts Society and the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival. She has appeared at venues throughout New Orleans, including the Contemporary Arts Center, the Mahalia Jackson Theater for the Performing Arts, the Saenger Performing Arts Center, Trinity Episcopal Church and local night clubs, such as the Red Room, Café Brazil, El Matador and the Blue Nile. During Micaela’s extensive career, she has studied and performed with some of the most important names in dance on both coasts, including Merce Cunningham and Donald Byrd. She has show cased her own choreography and direction through company and solo performance work in Los Angeles at venues such as the Barnsdall Theater, California University at Los Angeles and the Los Angeles Institute of Contemporary Arts
Leticia Jimenez has been dancing since the age of 4. Her studies include ballet, classical Spanish dance, flamenco, modern, tap, and jazz. It didn’t take her long to find her true calling as a skilled choreographer, producer, and director of Flamenco Productions. She has toured all over the world as a headliner, choreographer and master teacher. She has studied under renowned artists such as Eva “La Yerbabuena”, Domingo Ortega and Farruquito just to name a few. Leticia’s brings to Ven Pa’ca her unique ability to blend modern rhythms from all over the world with classical flamenco techniques.
John Lawrence is a flamenco guitarist who studied in Sevilla, Spain, with Nino de Pura, as well as with Carlos Sanchez and Santiago Aguilar. Besides performing and teaching flamenco guitar, Lawrence composed and produced the original soundtrack for the movie Anthem. He has also worked with legendary blues musicians Charlie Musselwhite and Bonnie Raitt. Lawrence is a co-founder of New Orleans flamenco company Ven Pa’Ca.
Vicarious Flamenco: Eliza Llewellyn at the Dancing Grounds Fundraiser
The Hi Ho Lounge on St. Claude Avenue is perhaps not the first place you might think of to see a flamenco performance,its usual hipster dive bar atmosphere and self proclaimed commitment to the “underground music scene” might elide the possibility that flamenco has a place there, but this is New Orleans, a city that is nothing if not inclusive and innovative. And so, on Saturday November 9, the Dancing Grounds Speakeasy Studio held its monthly party, fundraiser and Fringe Fest Preview at the Hi Ho- bringing together a fascinating fusion of dances that represent their wide range of class offerings: modern dance, burlesque, hip hop and- flamenco. (read last week’s blog at flamencosinola.wordpress.com for information about Eliza’s barefoot flamenco class).
Directly following a modern dance Fringe Fest preview and a solidly funny stand up comedy stint by Addy Najera (look out for her!) I shuffled my way closer to the stage in anticipation of Eliza’s upcoming performance. Under the always present distinctive red glow of the Hi Ho , Eliza and her guest on vocals, Barbara Vizcaini both dressed all in black with a texture of lace, entered the small stage in slow determined gait to the marked rhythm of solea por bulerias. This is one of the most serious and emotional of the palos, and their entrance suggested a profound story was about to be told.
The benefit to the layout at Hi-Ho for dance performances, is that you can get right up close to the stage: feel the pulse of each golpe, the breath in each pause, and watch (or try to catch) the skilful dexterity of footwork. But even to the uninitiated in the audience, its hard to imagine any one who did not experience the rise and fall of the emotional crescendos embodied in Eliza’s movements, or feel the energetic releases visible in the bulbs of sweat that projected sharply from her core, following the trajectory of the fringes of her flecos, as they whipped around her. Barbara sang an original composition, letras de bulerias, adapted to the solea por bulerias palo. The lyrics , as Eliza explained, spoke of departure, and of having to leave one’s home and those they love behind.
Following this stirring performance, Burlesque dancer Lady Ginger Licious appearing in a white bedazzled corset and bustier, offered a new way to think about tassels, and the finale – The Dancing Grounds Buku Dance Crew’s hip hop performance, and line dance instruction! (Who could ask for anything more?) had me reconsidering my own rear-end potential.
It was an inspiring smorgasbord of offerings at the Hi Ho, and one that is uniquely and comfortably New Orleans: a place that knows how to tease you like a burlesque number, pull you in deep like a solea flamenco palo, and will ultimately leave you celebrating your relationship to your own behind.
We here at Flamenco Si heartily support the Dancing Grounds family and their mission to keep New Orleanians dancing! Here are some links to support the Dancing Grounds venture to renovate a new dance studio in the Bywater and expand their offerings…
In case you weren’t able to make it to an event or have acute symptoms of (FOMO- Fear. Of Missing. Out.), don’t fret! We will post photos from all events to our blog, and share show highlights!
Don’t forget to register your email on the blog! (at the bottom right of the screen)
Flamenco Si Co-editors, Daniella Santoro and Ingrid Adrianza