Flamenco Dancing & Church Ladies

In small, island churches, there aren’t always elaborate sound systems, teams of musicians or singers with the voice of an angel. Sometimes it’s just a church mother and her voice filled with years of experience of overcoming with God’s Grace and a tambourine.

When I was a kid, the tambourine was the funnest instrument in church but it seemed so complicated. How do you hit, how do you make the sounds on time, how do people clap and hit simultaneously?! Church ladies got that on lock!

And what does this have to do with flamenco dancing? A few weeks ago while in Spain, we got a special performance of a flamenco dancer, singer and a man on a guitar.

They each had their solo moments and performed a few pieces as a group. I sat and basked in it. Even though we were just a small group, each performer gave 110% — from her facial expressions and movements to the singing…it was fun. The rhythmic combination of the clipping and feet stomping just reminded me of the tambourine and the ladies in church. Raw, organic music.

Then of course, they had us learn a little flamenco ourselves!

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