Here I am Sunday night 11:45 pm waiting for the first group of the DTSBCO dancers to arrive to Hotel America where we are staying. It is a warm tropical night with the characteristic soothing sounds of frogs and crickets.
I can not believe that almost a week has gone by since our arrival to Lindo Colima Mexico!! It has been a fabulous week in every way, the perfect combination of work and having a great time. Dana's classes have been so well received by this very warm, talented, energetic and beautiful dance community of the University of Colima that it makes us very happy. Three days in a row we have seen dances performed and created by the Colima artists contemporary and folkloric and I will live to remember so much of what I have seen these days. Their happiness and good attitude to work is contagious and I am so glad for that and also grateful to Dana for having me as his assistant in this project.
Mexico in a way seems a little like home to me a Peruvian, both the language language and the body language is very similar that I feel absolutely adapted to the environment. There is a plus that is that Colima not being a big city has an unstressed pace making everything easier - 10 minutes at most to get anywhere.
I can not write much longer today but do not want to leave without mentioning some highlights and special people of this trip:
-- The amazing thunderstorm on our second day while in class
-- Walking out to the balcony of my hotel room every morning and looking for the great Colima Volcano and seeing it magnificent on clear skied days.
-- The beautiful ceramic precolumbian dogs seen in every museum and the replicas in every store.
-- The numerous plazas with mango trees and many other trees, paradise of refreshing shade in the hot day walks around the city.
-- The 6:30 am bells of the neighboring churches.
-- The huge and great obscene figure sculpture by Jose Luis Cueva in the roundabout near the University theater.
-- The vast and wonderful sprung floor in dance studio number 9 where we work under an incredible Zamarripa sculpture of a crucified man.
-- Having free food at the portales of the small town of Comala as long as you order any beverage.
-- The Ex Hacienda Nogueras home to a famous Colima painter Alejandro Rangel Hidalgo and now a museum , a very prolific and influential artist in this area. I will never forget the angels and children he portrays
-- Having time for long conversations with Dana.
-- Our host Deni who picks us up everyday and helps us out with many things
-- Meeting Mr. Rafael Zamarripa, an amazing person that has been very special to us, with his conversation and questions and opening himself to us by inviting us to his home.
Sunday, June 29, 2008
Last night we saw a wonderful performance by the Colima University Dance students. It was quite diverse and technically quite fine. Tati and I spent the day in Comala a small city near Colima sightseeing and walking through the small streets. There seems to be a mango tree and orange tree on every corner here. We are off to attend 2 dance concerts this evening. The arts community is quite vibrant here.
Friday, June 27, 2008
Tati and I love working with the Colima modern dance community! What gorgeous dancers! Setting Images from the Embers on 8 of the dancers is going very well. It is as if our company has twins in Colima. It is a very interesting process for me to see the repertoire transfered to another community. We had a beautiful lunch after class and rehearsal today with Maestro Zamarripas, the director of the Colima Folkloric Ballet. He is an amazing teacher and artist. He has a beautiful home and sculpture studio. What a wonderful conversationalist, I was quite inspired by him. Such a gifted man. We are so glad to have had the opportunity to spend the day with the Maestro. Off the theatre to see the dance students of the University perform, many of their teachers are taking our classes currently.
Thursday, June 26, 2008
Tati and I arrived 3 days ago in Colima, Mexico and have been teaching and setting my work Images from the Embers on modern dancers here. We have been so impressed by the quality of the dancers. They have beautiful alignment and training. Their training facility at the University of Colima is gorgeous, large sprung wood floor studios with 2 story tall ceilings. The theatre in which we will perform when the company arrives seats 1000 and was built 2 years ago. It has state of the art lighting and sound systems. It is quite grand in size! Tati and I teach in the mornings, rehearse and teach again in the afternoon. The city is quite colorful with tropical gardens and plazas full of people. The early evenings are when a cool breeze sweeps through the hot streets and people sit for coffee and drinks at sidewalk cafes. Life in Colima has a pace which feels very natural and alive. Off to class!
Monday, June 23, 2008
Dana Tai Soon Burgess will soon be blogging from Mexico as the company tours Guadalajara and Colima. Dana arrives June 23 to teach and choreograph. His dancers will join him June 28. Check back here soon for a more detailed schedule and to read about their adventures.