Tomorrow marks the end of another Summer School of the Spanish Dance Society here in London. It is an annual event and one not to be missed.
The Spanish Dance Society has a wonderful history and quite surprisingly it was established in South Africa in 1965 by some very dedicated dancers and teachers who had all studied with Spanish teachers, including Dame Marina Keet (Marina Grut), who also studied with Eloy Pericet in Madrid. Together with her colleagues, they established a graded syllabus for teaching Spanish dance including those of the Escuela Bolera. That syllabus is now used throughout the world.
In 2002 Marina Grut published her outstanding book on the Escuela Bolera called The Bolero School (Dance Books). With her vast knowledge and experience, she writes about Spanish dance’s the regional roots and connections to flamenco, details of the Pericet family and their exercises and dances codified for the first time, about the Cecchetti method and the Bournonville method, the Ballet Nacional de España, There is a Prologue by Alberto Lorca, which starts: ‘Marina says that I am the last living mammoth of Spanish classical dancing…’. The Appendix includes Ivor Guest‘s article on ‘The Escuela Bolera in London in the Nineteenth Century‘. As of the contents are not exciting enough, I must say that the photographs, lithographs and the colour illustrations are absolutely beautiful.
© 2010 Thérèse Wassily Saba