Do you enjoy Spanish music? Do you feel like moving? Would you like to learn new rhythms? And imagine, for a few hours per week, that you are a modern Carmen? There are a thousand a one reasons to take flamenco dance classes.
You should know, however, that flamenco has some basic rules. Only a thorough understanding of those rules (and then their mastery) allows proper performance and (later) improvisation. They include discipline and perseverance. This means that, if you decide to learn to dance the flamenco, you should NOT miss any classes unless you have a compelling reason. You should also listen to as many flamenco CDs as possible, to soak up the music, and become familiar with the rhythms. This will allow you to become a better dancer.
Flamenco dance owes its magic to the mastery of standard moves such as zapateado (leg stomping), pitos (finger snapping), and palmas (hand clapping), the speed of execution of these moves, the sensuality of the head and shoulder postures, and the strength of feet well anchored to the floor. It requires stamina and esthetics, all good reasons to be persistent and not lower the arms!
At first, progress in flamenco dance may seem somewhat slow, laborious, and even fastidious. But it is absolutely necessary for a student to reach at first optimal conditioning and become very familiar with the basics of each of the styles, upon which further learning will build.
Our experience in various flamenco schools, in Lebanon as well as abroad, has taught us that it is useless to teach a beginner student some complicated “step” that he or she will forget (frustratingly!) soon after the lesson is over, or to teach a large number of steps in a small span of time, neglecting the basic work of arms, hands, head, hips, legs… For flamenco is, before anything else, an “attitude,” a posture, a specific way of moving, of stomping one’s feet. To master the basics well and early on, will help the students progress faster and more effectively once, they assemble the basics into real flamenco dancing.
Flamenco dance is acquired step by step, and if some of the early classes are devoted to conditioning, what joy later when the first choreographies, simple but so noble start taking shape.
To dance the flamenco, it is advised to have well-adapted shoes, as well as a wide layered skirt necessary for both the looks but also the ease of certain steps.