Why I dance
I dance Flamenco because it is who I am.
I share my last name with Triana, a neighbourhood in Sevilla, Spain. Throughout history, many flamenco singers, guitarists and dancers came from this gitano neighbourhood. (We know today that the people that are referred to as gypsy are the Roma people who have their own ethnic origins).
In 2008, I decided to travel to Triana.
That trip was a fundamental turning point for me in my dance training. In Triana, I found my passion and knew I had to return home to Vancouver to continue my studies in Flamenco.
I will never know whether or not I am personally connected to the Roma people of Triana because of my own family’s lack of documentation further than two generations before me. Regardless, I know that the art of Flamenco is a part of me.
I dance Flamenco to keep history alive.
In my practice, I try to study about the flamenco origins in order to understand the cultural significance of the dance form and honour the hardship and persecution of the Roma people who created it. Today, flamenco is recognized by the flamenco community in Spain as an art form that has been adopted by the world. In 2010, UNESCO recognized it as the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.
I dance Flamenco to connect.
In flamenco, I am free to express themes of grief, sorrow, loss, anger, strength, joy and fun. I want to show people that they are not alone in those feelings and that through the hardship of life, there can be peace, there can be strength and there can emerge hope and joy. Flamenco projects life and shows that there is beauty in all of life’s complexities.
I dance Flamenco to create community.
In this time in our globalized technological world, we must not lose our humanity and our physical and emotional connection to one another. Dance will always bring people together in our everyday struggles. It brings us joy to watch and helps us reflect on what matters most; each other.