Where Do I Begin?

Long time no post….this fall has been a whirlwind, mostly a very good whirlwind.

The September tango-tour of the East coast (with Mandragora Tango) was excellent, really fun, lots of memorable times, new friends and old, great milongas.  Read about it at mandragoratango.com.

Then I went back out, this time with Ensemble Espanyol (still no enye on my keyboard), and we were mostly in New York: the city, the Bronx, Long Island, and White Plains.  I had almost too much fun rooming with and hanging with the other guitarist (and singer, more importantly), Paco Fonta.  He’s a very fine artist but we laughed ourselves sick with ridiculous, juvenile antics.

The Ensemble is based in Chicago, and, while I was there rehearsing, the much-loved and legendary dancer/teacher Edo Sie passed away, I believe it was on October 13th.  I was so fortunate to attend his funeral, at St Ida’s Church, on the 16th.  It was a lovely service.

I particularly remember 4 things about Edo:  his remarkable penmanship, so tiny, so elegant, so beautiful—calligraphy, really.  Secondly, I recall passing by a dance studio where he was to be teaching a Jota class.  For some reason, no students attended that day.  Yet there was Edo, dancing full out, flying around the room, pouring sweat—and all alone.  I played guitar for many of his dance classes; he’d stand in front of me, shouting jaleo, encouraging me to play all out, regardless of how many times we had to repeat a paso.  Lastly, there was his shout of “lenteja!”  Dancers remember his exhortations toward erect, pulled up posture—as if clutching a tiny lentil with one’s butt cheeks….There will never be another Edo.

This weekend we’re off to Detroit.  Saturday, November 6th, Rachel “la Mala” and I are doing a cante/guitar workshop.  On Sunday, the 7th, we’re joined by 2 flamenco dancers (Andrea Plevan, from Minneapolis and Tessa Goldberg from Detroit) as we put up our original presentation:  Viva Sefarad:  Flamenco and the Jews of Spain.  This will be at the Congregation Beth Ahm in West Bloomfield.  It starts at 2:30 PM and is free and open to the public!  Yea!

A few passing comments:  Boo, Tea Party!   Shame on you and your narrow, racist agenda.  Yea, Giants!  The Year of the Pitcher was exciting, indeed!  Boo, Michelle Bachman!  Yea, Keith Ellison!  Obama is my man through it all and Hillary’s the gal! (I AM a big fan of Condie Rice, too.)  I love Randy Moss and can not fault him for speaking the truth.  Beyond all that, I love flamenco and I love the guitar! And Tang0, too….