The flamenco school welcomes 100 Spanish and international singing, dance and guitar students, who will train until June with teachers such as Javier Barón, Milagros Mengibar, Juan José Amador, José de la Tomasa, Pedro Sierra and Niño de Pura, amongst others

The Foundation Cristina Heeren is once again bustling. The flamenco school opens the 2017/2018 Annual Flamenco Course, the first that will take place entirely in the new site at Pureza street in the Sevillan neighbourhood of Triana. For the first time, the near 100 enrolled students will be in contact during the Orientation Week, which kicked off Monday 25 September with a welcome session. Cristina Heeren, the Academic Director Pepa Sánchez, the teachers and the staff welcomed the students, informing them about the school dynamic, the schedule, the academic plan and other practical details, with simultaneous translation in English by Cathy Miller. Addressing the students, Sánchez insisted on three pieces of advice: “Take responsibility for your learning, embrace the difference and enjoy the experience”, encouraging them to get to know Sevilla, its surrounds and the Andalusian culture. The president confessed to them that “really what I want is to know that everyone is happy”. And that is “thanks to flamenco”.

After the welcome in the assembly hall, the students headed to the classrooms to undertake the level tests in each speciality in front of the teachers: Javier Barón, Milagros Menjíbar, Luisa Palicio and Beatriz Rivero in Dance; José de la Tomasa, Juan José Amador, María José Pérez, Manuel Romero and Rosa Navarro ‘La Divi’ in Singing; and Pedro Sierra, Niño de Pura, Paco Cortés, Pedro Barragán and Pedro Sánchez in Guitar, with the assistance and academic coordination from teacher Patricia Lozano and the team of instructors. Meanwhile, the rest of the students undertook warmup and technique sessions with the school’s auxiliaries, previous students who have completed advanced level in previous courses. Over the week, the level tests will continue as well as technique sessions and group rhythm classes, plus tests for the elective subjects. Additionally, the school has invited external speakers to offer the students different perspectives on flamenco and the artistic profession such as “Managing the artist’s emotions” by psychologist José Antonio Galliani and the triple session “Taking care of your health during the academic year” by otolaryngologist and surgeon Pablo Muñoz-Cariñanos for the singers, teacher Pedro Barragán for the guitarists, and the flamenco dress consultant Virginia Campos for the dancers. This preview week before the regular classes will culminate with the students enjoying their first shared experience in the central patio, heart of the school which once again beats with force.