How to learn flamenco during Festival Flamenco Alburquerque

[anvplayer video=”5181168″ station=”998122″]

ALBURQUERQUE, N.M. — If you ever wanted to learn how to dance flamenco, now may be the time as the Festival Flamenco Alburquerque is happening through June 17.

Flamenco originated in Spain and the end of the 18th century.

For context, Spain settled in New Mexico during the 16th century.

“We were under Spanish rule for three hundred years and so certainly that influence of Spain is very present in New Mexico,” said Eva Encinias, the founding director of the National Institute of Flamenco.

For 36 years now, Albuquerque has been home to El Festival Flamenco where nearly 100 performers – some even from Spain – take to the stage for over thirty performances.

“People love flamenco. They come here from all over the world to take advantage of this very powerful experience,” Encinias said.

Organizers say part of the experience isn’t just watching flamenco – but also learning it.

“We have workshops in singing and guitar, dance for all levels from the very beginner through the high-end professionals,” Encinias explained.

Performers like Olga Pericet teach some of these workshops. Pericet was born and raised in Spain and has performed at the festival for years.

“Flamenco to Albuquerque is something so special. It’s done with a lot of love, a lot of dedication and a lot of work. It shows that the people live it just like we do,” Pericet expressed.

Organizers say this festival is a big national and international draw to the city. They expect this year’s festival will be bigger than recent years, now that COVID restrictions are lifted.

“Our numbers are higher than ever in terms of participants and show audience members,” Encinias said.

The festival started Friday and will go through June 17. UNM, the National Hispanic Cultural Center and Hotel Albuquerque will host this year’s events.

Watch the video above and click here to learn more about the workshops and performances.