Thursday, March 20, 2014

Almárabe, Spain - or the return to (one more) home*

One more wonderful trip in a series of non stop work travelling around the world: Malaga, Spain. Second time teaching and performing at ALMÁRABE FESTIVAL, meeting Andaluzia (a part of my childhood) and all the great, heart warming people who receive me there with open arms.
I had to re-visit Pablito (of course) - talking about Pablo Picasso´s museum and family home - and eat Thyssen Museum with my own hands. All arts are - more and more - connected to me: painting is dance; theatre is singing; sculpture is writing and so on. Separation makes no sense anymore - it never did.
Men in Malaga seemed to be quite... - how can I say this in a diplomatic manner? -...warm too. I lost of the count of the Olé(s) I heard on my walking tours in the town. Despite the (often funny) harassing, I LOVE Malaga and its Andaluzian sweet small town feeling. The corner coffee-shops hidden in surprising nooks, the old narrow streets with stories coming out of their rocky mouths, the smell of local food and the music of the Andalusian spanish (el Andalu)...adore everything.
Teaching - Majancé Star Maker & Saiidi old & new - was a pleasure. The trick is in the CHARACTER of the dancers/students and how brave they are to take on a Magical Journey that will certainly remove them from their comfortable zone and lead them to places they´ve never been.
Performing was - well...the lack of words for this one is overwhelming - a gift from God. The stage is - and I guess it will always be (or not) - a SACRED place for me: under that spotlight everything is PERFECT, COMPLETE, in PEACE and HAPPY; everybody understands/feels me and we realize we´re all ONE. Mind you: these are not simple words but REALITY.
The temptation to use the stage in order to feed my ego is done - thanks God. I cannot just show off my moves, how much I know (or don´t know) and how brilliant I can be - those are absolutely dispensable. Performing is all about CONNECTING with myself and others, creating a BRIGDE of love, joy, LIFE and a glimpse of Paradise. Anything less than that does not do the trick for me.

With Nazareth.
Time off was divided into bookshops´hunting (the uncontrollable addiction), Pablo Picasso´s painting (still my favourite painter and a Master of Oriental Dance on his own right), private classes teaching and a lovely afternoon of local delicacies over-eating at the beach (gracias, Nazareth).
Gaspacho, fritada and sea food paella - a different way of saying HEAVEN. 
Thanking Esalim for trusting - one more time - my Vision of Oriental Dance as well as all the incredible people who received me with open arms (Nazareth, Diana, "Funun" orchestra, Emad, all the students and audience who made me feel understood, appreciated and loved beyond any measure).
Gracias, mis amores. Gracias, Andaluzia for remaining a home where FIRE and INSPIRATION never cease to Spring.

Backstage self-portrait.

Nazareth and me on the town after local food over (OVER) eating. The waiter who served us at the restaurant exclaimed on our faces: "How is it possible that two people can eat that much?!" Well, WE CAN. We are women of substance - in every possible way.

Rehearsal with Funun orchestra.

With the beautiful organizer, dancer and teacher Esalim. Love you, chica!
 "Minotauro acariciando con el hocico la mano de una mujer dormida" by Pablo Picasso

"La Buenaventura" by Julio Romero Torres (1922) at the Thyssen Museum (Malaga)
True Story*

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