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Susana Elena

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SCHOOL PROGRAMS

Ecos de España School Assembly Promotional Video

ASSEMBLY PROGRAM DESCRIPTION

Ecos de España’s 45-minute assembly introduces students in grades K-12 to Spain’s rich, sophisticated centuries-old tradition of classical and flamenco music and dance through a live, interactive performance.  

 

It provides today’s “global generation” of students an opportunity to learn about Hispanic performing arts with multicultural roots that extend far beyond the Americas.  (Music and dance from Spain contain influences from the ancient Phoenicians, Celts, Greeks and Romans, the Middle East, North Africa, India, the Caribbean, South America and the three great Western religions; Judaism, Christianity and Islam.)  

Almer Imamovic, Susana Elena, Albertossy Espinoza

Ecos de España

Solo classical guitarist Almer Imamovic introduces students to a selection of the timeless classics created for the Spanish guitar, such as “Asturias,” by I. Albeniz.  The diverse repertoires of flamenco dancer Susana Elena and Spanish classical dancer Albertossy Espinoza acquaint students with a variety of dances from Spain’s outstanding classical, theatre and Gypsy flamenco dance traditions.  Students will see Albertossy perform “Paso Doble” with a bullfight cape, as well as Susana Elena perform “Guajira,” a flamenco dance influenced by Cuban rhythms. Each number is preceded with educational introductions by the artists.

 

Audience interaction is encouraged throughout the program.  From their seats students learn how to yell typical “jaleos” such as OLÉ, how to use their arms and hands like flamenco dancers, and participate in a simple but popular clapping game to rhythm.  Also from their seats, students are taught by Almer how to execute the Spanish strumming technique called “rasqueado” with their fingers. To better introduce and explain Albertossy’s Paso Doble, we choose a student to be the pretend bull to Susana’s matador, and the audience always finds this hilarious.  At program’s end volunteers are invited onstage to join us in a flamenco tango, danced with scarves.

 

During the course of the program we emphasize healthy choices.  For example, students gain perspective for the work ethic, patience and preparation necessary to become an expert when Almer explains how he

practiced six to eight hours a day to master the guitar.  

 

A teacher’s manual is provided.  

Flamenco dancer Susana Elena, left, teaches Rhea Clark, a 7th grader at La Paz Intermediate School, how to perform with castanets during an International Festival at the school on Friday, April 27, 2018. (Photo By Jeff Antenore, Contributing Photographer).  Orange County Register May 1, 2018.

WORKSHOP DESCRIPTION

 

The 30-minute pre-assembly workshops are very low cost and provide a more detailed, in-depth introduction to the assembly experience.  Susana defines key elements of Spanish history, culture and the performing arts. A short video is shown (when possible) of the acclaimed Gypsy, Farruquito, dancing as a child.  Important flamenco concepts, such as palmas (handclaps to rhythm), are reinforced through practice exercises. Students get an up-close opportunity to learn about and try out props and instruments, such as Spanish castanets.  Because of time and space constraints, during the assemblies only a handful of students can join us onstage to dance. However the workshops allow for everyone to learn and perform the flamenco tango.

 

MISSION STATEMENT

Making the arts a part of children’s lives is important for the skills they impart, the cultural knowledge they convey and, above all, for the joy they bring.  

 

CERTIFICATIONS

The assembly program and workshops were certified by the Los Angeles County Arts Commission in 2007, and align with VAPA Standards for music and dance.  They also contain partial content for history, social science, mathematics and language. 

 

ATTENTION SCHOOLS

Ecos de España occasionally receives grant money from individuals, foundations and community organizations that fund the programs. If you are interested in hosting assemblies and/or workshops please contact me.

WE GET LETTERS AND PICTURES

SCHOOL ASSEMBLIES AND WORKSHOPS

  • 186th St. School, Gardena

  • Bandini Elementary School, Commerce

  • Campbell Hall Episcopal School, N. Hollywood 

  • Carlthorp School, Santa Monica

  • Crestview Preparatory, La Canada

  • Eastmont Middle School, Montebello

  • Edison Elementary Glendale

  • El Sereno Elementary School, El Sereno  

  • Esperanza Elemetary, Los Angeles 

  • Foothill Christian School, Glendora

  • Foster Elementary Baldwin Park 

  • Glendale Community College

  • Grand Vision Foundation, San Pedro

  • Herrera Elementary, Long Beach

  • Holy Family Elementary School, Glendale

  • Icahn Elementary School, Bronx, New York  

  • Jackson Elementary, Pasadena

  • Jersey Ave Elementary, Santa Fe Springs 

  • La Paz Elementary, Mission Viejo 

  • Lafayette Elementary Long Beach 

  • Lakeview Elementary Santa Fe Springs

  • Loyola Village Arts Magnet Elementary 

  • Maywood Elementary School

  • Music Teacher's Association, Pasadena

  • Niemes Elementary, Artesia

  • Nieto Herrera Elementary Long Beach 

  • Oakmont Elementary School

  • Our Lady of Guadalupe, El Sereno 

  • Ramona Alessandro, San Bernardino

  • Sage Hill High School, Newport Coast

  • San Marino Community Church Nursery School

  • San Marino Montessori School 

  • Signal Hill Elementary Long Beach

  • Signal Hill Elementary, Long Beach

  • St. Joseph Center, Venice

  • Turning Point Elementary Culver City 

  • Ventura Community College, Spanish Dept.

  • West Hollywood Elementary School

  • Westridge School, Pasadena

  • Wild Rose Elementary School, Monrovia 

  • William Anton Elementary School, LA 

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