women simply love flamenco
By Kae Waki
We Japanese women are so adventurous that we will try
anything that is different. Flamenco
happens to be one of them. The
first flamenco boom in Japan happened during the sixties but it was limited to
artists. Only during recent years
has flamenco become popular among the masses.
Several Spanish restaurants started staging flamenco shows and all of us
were so fascinated that we flocked to watch the shows rather than eat Spanish
food. The media picked up from
there – documentaries, movies, musicals, etc. followed. At this point, entertainers started learning flamenco and
became idols of women of all ages.
Dancing with the stars)
my case, I was first introduced to flamenco at my friend's wedding party.
One of my colleagues, who was just a beginner, performed a flamenco
recital at the party. It was my
first time to see, and I was simply mesmerized by it.
That is when an idea flashed in my mind, "It is exactly what I was
looking for". I couldn't start
immediately because of my busy schedule, although I was thinking about it every
After three years, finally I
could start going to a flamenco studio in Tokyo and have now learned almost for
4 years. It is actually not easy
with relatively complicated steps and peculiar rhythms, but it is a lot of fun
as you get to know it.
continues to be extremely popular in Japan despite a recent decline in the
number of women enrolling. Japanese travel agencies offer flamenco tours to Spain and
hundreds of women travel every year to watch and/or learn flamenco from teachers
in Spain. Along with tango,
flamenco is a popular hobby among women who like the discipline required for
The rhythm, the
footwork, coordination of hand movement, and the guitar – it is simply the
right fit for Japanese people despite the fact that flamenco did not originate
in Japan. While we Japanese are not
generally encouraged to show our emotions and passions in public, we can do that
during flamenco and that is another reason why we are so attracted to it.
found a new passion in my life since I started
learning flamenco. What started as
a curiosity initially has transformed into a hobby, and maybe a lifelong passion
for me. Like a lot of other
Japanese women, it has allowed me to better understand the power of emotions and
how that can be expressed through a dance form.
I am learning to better express my feelings and have acquired a new
perspective on the role of dance in a woman’s life.
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