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I am looking for a dance teacher to come and teach a dance class, at
an Oakland school near Lake Merritt, to my 7 year old students. There
are 21 kids in the class and most have little or no dance experience.
We can use the stage at school for the class. I would be open to any
type of dance maybe modern or an ethnic dance. The class would be
about an hour for 10-12 weeks. It would be great if it could
culminate with a short performance. The teacher should have
experience working with this age group.
an elementary teacher
If flamenco dance is an option, I can very highly recommend
Sara Ayala. She has 30+ years experience teaching and is
great with kids. She brings skirts for girls, vests for
boys, fans and castanets for student use, and usually also
has live guitar accompaniment (no extra charge for
guitarist). I am sure she could organize a performance, and
if students decide to continue with her (either if your
group class extends or students opt for private lessons) all
her students get many performance opportunities around the
East Bay. She currently teaches a children's class at
Harding Elementary in El Cerrito, and children's private
lessons (and adult classes as well). Her phone number is
(510)527-9977. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
I'm interested in taking an adult Flamenco dance class at
Ashkenaz in Berkeley. I don't know anyone else who takes this
type of dance, and was wondering if anyone has any experience
with any of the three instructors who teach Flamenco there:
Yaelisa, Alicia Zamora, Carola Zertuche. THANKS in advance!
I've taken flamenco classes from Alicia and Yaelisa and watched
Carola's classes often (because they're right before
Yaelisa's). Whose classes you prefer will probably depend on
how much other dance experience you've had. Alicia Zamora's
classes are the easiest and the most welcoming. She's very
warm and friendly and good at working with people of all
different levels. I actually prefer Yaelisa's classes, because
they're more technical and challenging, but I'm a former ballet
dancer, so my taste may be different from yours. Some people
find Yaelisa difficult as a person. She's certainly got high
standards. She's incredibly musical and you'll learn a lot
from her. If nothing else, go see her company dance! As for
Carola, I don't think she does any beginning classes. I've
never been brave enough to take one of her classes. They're
wonderful to watch, but most of her students look like they've
been dancing flamenco for years.
Love to dance
My four year-old daughter has expressed interest in taking a
flamenco dance class, but the only children's classes I know of
start around age 6 or 7. Any leads regarding a flamenco class
for a child her age would be much appreciated! Thank you.
My 4 year old has suddenly become obsessed with flamenco, of all things! She is
currently taking ballet, but want to take flamenco dance. Is there anyplace that
teaches flamenco dance for someone that young? Or should I steer her towards tap
until she gets older?
foot-stompin' 4 year olds' mama
Lucky! I'm obsessed with flamenco but I can't convince my 8-
year-old to take a class for love or money.
Anyway, if I could, the first place I'd start is Ashkenaz in
Berkeley, where Alicia Zamorra teaches flamenco classes. I
don't know if she is still teaching kids (especially that
young), but she will know who does. Your daughter would
probably start out learning the Sevillanas, which are a stock
folk dance sort of thing, and pretty easy to learn. Everyone,
even the children, in Spain, can do the Sevillanas.
Secondly, even more important than the steps is the compas,
that is, the beat, of flamenco music, Much of it is in a 12-
count that confounds those of us grownups who didn't grow up in
Spain. There's no point in dancing if you don't understand the
copmas, so the earlier you can marinate her in these sounds,
the easier time she'll have when she actually starts learning
to dance. I recommend the Rough Guide to Flamenco as a good
starter for you - lots of artists, both ''puro'' and ''Nuevo'' so
you can get a sense of what's out there. Just pop on the CD and
let her stomp around, get used to the rhythms and beats.
Finally, there are DVDs or videos you can get to watch, and let
her soak up the ''aire'' or attitude of flamenco, since that's
such a big part of the fun and excitement. You can pick up some
Just by watching some of these, my so-called uninterested
daughter, has picked up a number of steps and turns. It's
really awe-inspiring to see how easily young children pick this
Happy dancing with your nina!
I recently spoke with flamenco dance teacher Sara Ayala. She has
experience working with children and is willing to teach a young
children's class on Saturday afternoons at her studio in El
Cerrito if there is sufficient interest. Please contact her at
510-527-9977 if you're interested.
Years ago our daughter took Flamenco dance lessons from a
wonderful, talented woman I think named Sarita, in Berkeley. Does
anyone know where she teaches now? Or does anyone have a
recommendation for Flameno classes for a 14 year old? Thanks.
An excellent teacher for your daughter would be Alicia Zamorra.
She teaches at Ashkenaz in Berkeley on Saturdays, and at a
studio in El Ceritto on Wednesday nights. I took flamenco with
her for a year before recently moving out of the area. Her
classes are structured - students learn the first four coplas of
the Sevillanas before advancing on to other set dances such as
Tangillo, Bulerias and Alegrias. The thing I most liked about
Alicia's classes is that the vibe is friendly and supportive.
She puts the beginners up front, and takes special care to make
sure they understand the movement. Even the more advanced
dancers are helpful. Flamenco is a living art-form, and it's
challenging. There's a huge flamenco scene in the Bay Area, and
many teachers to take choreography classes from, but most are
not beginner-friendly. I strongly recommend Alicia's classes.
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