Dance, art, and Spanish music as storytelling…

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Concurrent with working on a full length Spanish-based play, in terms of art, selection of music, and its setting in New Mexico, I’ve been thinking about what music to include due to having a character who wants to return to playing the guitar. I’ve researched and thought about historic and contemporary compositions–Spanish and America songs played on a flamenco guitar and acoustic guitar. Some of the Spanish artists I’d like to include in the play are Juan Martinez Montanes and Diego Velazquez, Montanes known as a sculptor/artist and Velazquez a painter. The play deals with, again, a family dynamic in which a few of the characters have artistic interests, the father, the guitar, and the daughter painting. I have yet to fully decided on what selections of their art to configure, as I’m still working on the script-and I want to also research more the area and the state of New Mexico. Some of the play deals with seventeenth century Baroque; yet most of the music and art researched is derived specifically from Spain. I find is fascinating American music played on a Spanish guitar, and plan to include some of it as well in the play. It’ll be interesting finding a musician or an actor/musician for the play, which I’m hoping to do. I’ve listened to both female and male Spanish guitar players–and it’s amazing the music produced and how little attention it gets, at least in my own discovery of it. Listening to the Spanish guitar played by artist Ana Vidovic with “Recital and Interview” and the variety of Michael Hauser and Paco de Lucia, for example, has been a learning and inspiring experience for thinking about employing the Spanish guitar into the play–not only the generality of it but how classic it really is. I’m also considering a scene with Spanish dance in which I am still researching. The costumes are incredible in the way they tell a story. Dance, the gesture-movements, and whether structured choreographically and/or improvisational-wise, are as equivalent to reading a story; it’s that good, especially looking into flamenco dance–the technique of prepared body awareness and the focus of the art. I was really taken with the costume styles, anatomical expressions, and rhythmic forms from the Zorongo Flamenco’s website. What the studio offers is the opportunity for the community and public to look at music and dance as personal enrichment and a way to gain skill in the enjoyment of dancing while telling a story. Dance, as an art, profiles a much needed sector in American life. So I’m very much looking forward to continuing drafting this play and to see where it takes me–and I’m not even a dancer. Onward! 🙂

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