Our Comunidad Flamenca show celebrating 10 years of my academy was a success! It’s always so intense up until the very end. Does everyone know their entrances and exits? Will everyone remember their choreography? Will the musicians remember their cues? Do we have enough seats for the tickets sold? Will I be able to dance at full throttle after taking care of everyone else and having sat down for over an hour playing palmas?
The answer? Yes, yes, yes….. with just a few glitches. There were a few mistakes here and there. But everyone stayed in compás and smiled when they needed to! There were some very knockout moments, though.
Can I critique anything really in the show? I could nitpick but I choose not to. The important thing was that overall, the dancers really danced their hearts out and put on a great show. Although one of my soloists had a surprisingly rougher time this year. This was very brave of her to share.
I know the hardest part about performing is that we all want a perfect cathartic moment. But that’s impossible. All you can do is try your best and then work on your own skills for next time. The thing that’s a bummer, though, is we want to try again NOW and we can’t wait until the next student show. (To my dancers– I know, I know, I’m working on it so you can dance more often!)
The one thing that I saw that most needs work for next time is building muscle memory so personal expression can come out. It’s so unsexy to say that you just need to practice WITH SOLO COMPAS (broken record here and here and here) but that’s where it’s at.
Once you practice IN THE STUDIO over and over and you know your choreography IN COMPAS, it gets in your bones and muscles. THEN you build that confidence, the calmness and strength to really exude that flamenca attitude. The next show won’t be perfect either because nothing is perfect- but at least you can have built and improved on the last show.
But I will say that I am one proud flamenco mama. Some of my dancers have been with me for over five years, and they are so ready for tablao work. (Got a gig? Call us!) The newer ones have been improving by leaps and bounds.
I hope the dancers all come away from the experience having loved the process because the end result is gone in an instant. And for me, the entire process of being in class, rehearsing for the show, getting dressed, performing, then celebrating in the end is what gives me the most satisfaction. It’s makes me blessed to be a part of a flamenco family and it makes me proud as a teacher.