Always Be Dancing Expressive Arts

Yoga and Flamenco for Every/body

What do I know from Bulerias…I mean it! Oy vey! What do I know!

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Let me kvetch! The ominous Bulerías has been on my mind lately. Why is it such an illusive dance for me? I get the rhythm, I get it…but damn there is something so stifling about letting myself let go and just dancing. I feel stiff and awkward and so not “me”…but I love the lime light…the center of the circle…the attention of the moment. So I will journey into myself and find my Bulería-self!

My journey begins…

Bulerías is a flamenco style which stems from the soleá family. It shares the same rhythmical structure, the difference being, in general terms, a more up-tempo performance. The bulería has many variations in terms of both melody and meter and is normally accompanied by hand claps (palmas) on the off beats and a turn by the dancer (bailaor). Jerez de la Frontera is the true home of the bulería. As for the dance, the bulería has made the break away from private family gatherings to make a name for itself on the stage – as a coda to the soleá, as a climatic closing number, or frequently as an encore. This is a palo where the whole company joins in, gathering round to form a ‘corrillo’ as they egg on not only the bailaores, but also the tentative footwork (or tomfoolery) of the musicians.

The compás pattern is: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12
For the palmas, you can follow the above pattern, but the music dictates the rhythm you should be clapping, so you need to listen tot he music and decide if it is 12’s, 6’s or 3’s…
So, for palmas:
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 
1(+) 2 3 4 (+) 5 6 7 (+) 8 9 10 (+) 11 12 
1(+) 2 (+) 3 (+) 4 (+) 5 (+) 6 7 (+) 8 (+) 9 (+) 10 (+) 11 (+) 12

A very good site, with an explanation of the nuances of the palmas for this palo is compas-flamenco/palos.

When dancing Bulería in fiesta form (this is also referred to as Bulerías de Jerez) everyone only offers up a “Patada de Bulería”-a morsel-and this is the “magic structure”:

Entrada (can sit and clap until you decide to dance; can mark time with just instruments playing; can mark time with singer. If you mark time while it is just instrumental, you will need to do a desplante to mark the end of your dance)
Letra (Mark time during letra; Llamada at end of singing; can dance now and do as many desplantes that you want, but once you end your desplante on 10, you have indicated that you are done dancing. If you do not go to the corenrner another letra will be sung)
Desplante (final call, bring yourself to corner to note that you are ready for the colatilla)
Salida (exiting marking and desplantes and final ending on 7 8 9 10)




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Author: alwaysbedancing

Always Be Dancing Expressive Movement: Yoga and Flamenco for Every/Body. I am committed to inclusion. I bring inclusion to school communities, fitness professionals, Pt's/OT's, yoga studios and every(body) in between through classes, workshops, professional development seminars, public speaking, and guest blogging. I can create a program specific to your needs.

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