Another performance is upon me. In a few weeks, I will dance in my third public event. My mind races with conflicting voices that confirm I am both terrified and excited. I still feel very inexperienced but know I get better each time. I don’t want to hold the group back. Tranquilo, Lori!
I am proud that I have progressed to a point where I am performance-worthy. It is exciting to share this wonderful art form with others. However, working in class a few days ago for two hours on a fairly new choreography, and trying to remember all of it correctly, has me just shy of panic mode.
It occurs to me, in order to continue moving forward, I need to cast a glance backwards to the start of my flamenco journey; my flamenco birth.
I got to know the owners and teachers of Flamenco Louisville when researching a possible special dance at my wedding to honor my soon-to-be mother-in-law. She was born and raised in Sevilla, Spain, and I thought it would be nice to dance for her at the reception with a nod to her homeland. Unfortunately, it never quite came together.
Time passed. I was plenty busy with a new household and family to take care of plus I was still in college and taking Catholicism classes. That is aside from my full time job. In hindsight, I think maybe I was looking ahead at the emptiness I would feel in terms of self improvement and spiritual growth once I finally graduated college after nine years and finalized my union with the church. Those were a short distance away, looming on the horizon, when I suddenly decided I was going to a flamenco class, just to try it out. My birth into the exhilarating world of flamenco took place on a Saturday in October 2012 and I have never looked back.
How did I know I would find something that has been so meaningful to me? How did I know I would love it so much? How did I know I would be performing in public three short (and long) years later? I didn’t. I knew none of it. All I knew was it looked fun and I wanted to challenge myself. I wanted to try something different than anything I had ever attempted before. I remember thinking during the first few classes that I really liked how I could express myself openly with flamenco no matter my mood. Flamenco covers it all. Since then, it has most certainly allowed me an outlet and has even been, dare I say, therapeutic!
My family says I am “obsessed.” Maybe….but it goes deeper for me and I cannot explain exactly why. Flamenco has touched my soul and it fulfills me in a way nothing else has. It called to me and I answered.
So, when fear or doubt strike, I simply go back to the beginning. I bring forth recollections of why I am so drawn to flamenco. I feel the emotions of the dance and music. I may not have been born to dance flamenco, but I was re-born because of flamenco.