Clara Rodriguez is artistic director and founder of AguaClara Flamenco, based in Oakland, CA. She has been training and working professionally in the flamenco world for nearly 30 years, and has since been a featured soloist in productions throughout the United States, Spain, Portugal and India.
In 2018 she became Adjunct Faculty at UC Berkeley teaching flamenco dance. She currently holds regular dance classes in Oakland and also offers workshops outside the Bay Area. She has been working for the past 3 years with the flamenco guitar program at Central High School in Fresno, CA. A lifelong musician in addition to her dance career, Clara is a classically trained pianist and holds a Bachelor of Arts from UCLA in Ethnomusicology.
Clara's beginner friendly, seated flamenco class will:
Start with a warm-up & introduction of flamenco, music and terminology. Terminology can be found below.
You will learn a short choreography and practice flamenco technique such as floreo (handwork), braceo (arm work), palmas (rhythmic hand clapping), pitos (snaps), body percussion and maybe even some singing!
There will be a lot of arm, wrist and finger movement in this class, including clapping and snapping! However, if you don’t have access to movement in your fingers or wrists, Clara will be giving options to do the moves without finger movement or do the moves in closed fist motion whenever applicable.
We trust that you are the best decision maker when it comes to your body, so please adapt movements as you see fit. If you would like some guidance on adapting a move to fit your body, you are welcome to ask for more variations during the class!
What do you take inspiration from?
My inspiration stems from both a love and appreciation for the traditional canon of flamenco dance and music, and the excitement of individual artistic expression. Flamenco is ever-evolving, inspiring in its freshness and in its way of looking back and appreciating the past.
Who are these classes for?
Everyone who loves to move, feel and create rhythm with their bodies and the desire to find new ways of expression.
Here is some important terminology for the class:
Terminology for the class:
palmas - handclaps
compás - rhythm
jaleos - words/shouts of encouragement. Examples of jaleos: ole, ale, toma, ay, eso es, arsa
cante - song or singing
baile - dance or dancing
por fiesta - party style dancing
Andalucia - Southern Spain
floreo - hand and wrist movements
braceo - arm movements