Dance and Fashion Benefit #London #Flamenco
That so many people chose to view yesterday’s Escuela de Baile School Show and the subsequent flamenco fashion show is a huge tribute to the organisers. That tickets were £20 per person shows quite clearly the genuine sense of community and mutual support that has grown around the dance school now in its 23rd year, especially when you consider the other free events that are available in London this weekend (Big Dance, the Tour de France, the More London Free Festival, the Real Food Market, the Royal Academy’s Summer Exhibition being just a few).
Initiated by Nathalie Cabrier to raise funds for the renal unit of Royal Ormond Street Children’s hospital, and supported by Escuela de Baile Principal Nuria Garcia, the students and flamenco-enthusiast-cum-fashionista Yoko Isaji, the audience was presented with a variety of dances from different classes as well as dancing tableaux involving everyone. There were two quite spectacular solos and I particularly liked the little choreographic flourishes; the well-coordinated swing of a group of dancers’ feet from front to back, the emphatic almost jazzy swish of shoulders as they changed from one tilted angle to another and the lighter touches to what might otherwise be considered traditional interpretations of well-known flamenco themes.
Most moving was the final performance in which Nathalie performed in a gorgeous bata de cola to a rock guitar song played and sung by her son who has a lovely stage presence and a rather mellifluous voice. Since this benefit was organised in appreciation of the help that the unit has given to Antoine; Nathalie said that it marks his coming of age and graduation to some other unit, it was a fitting final piece.
Escuela de Baile is the largest flamenco school in the UK
Yoko Isaji’s flamenco fashion, Yoko Elegancia
Nathalie’s JustGiving page