Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Cadiz Excursion: Flamenco Dancing

An excursion that was particularly popular with students was the trip to the Andalucian Flamenco Night. The trip was arranged by Professor Reyes-Torres, a native of Spain and one of the voyage's English professors. The show was a 30-minute ride from the port in Chiclana, and after light refreshments the crowd was led to a bullfighting ring. There they were treated to and amateur bullfight or cow taming with a young bull. The show was bloodless, and the students snapped many pictures while cooing over how cute both the little boy and bull were. After the amateur matador was carried out on the shoulders of a friend, a horse and flamenco dance commenced. This was one of the most interesting parts of the entire show because the horse actually danced with the two flamenco dancers. They tapped their hooves to the beat of the music, and hopped from leg to leg around the flamenco dancers, who twisted their arms in a serpentine fashion while performing complicated steps with their feet. The dancers also performed in the ring by themselves, matching their identical black and white dresses with fans that they threw and spun in the air, to the audiences delight.
After the conclusion of the dance, the students were led into a restaurant and treated to tapas or snacks, and something to drink. The dancers took to the stage and performed again, this time aided by a guitarist and singer. At the end of the show, the students got involved in the dancing as they learned how to do some of the simpler moves. One of the staff members, Danielle Jenkins, was celebrating her birthday and she danced with the flamenco dancers after they sang for her.
It was around 2300hrs. when the students were finally piled into the buses that brought them to Chiclana. After checking that all parties were accounted for, the group made its way back to the ship.

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