The Inner-Self Dance, with a Surprise Ending Contrast
It took me a long time to write about this Palo or flamenco dance style. I believe I wanted to study it more, feel it more, and listen to the experts on such a difficult subject. I say it is difficult because flamenco is not like all other dance forms. Flamenco comes from the heart, the inner feelings of a person, and it cannot be imitated. It is not free flowing like a ballet dance, and it talks to each one of us to the point of falling apart in our seats crying or smiling with joy. Solea por Bulerias is soul-searching, making you feel strong and empowered; something that lures the spectator, because it gives a mysterious feeling that cannot be explained lightly.
This dance lets me say…“I am angry, I am pissed, but I am going to enjoy life, and, so what?”
When gurus talk about Yoga, they explain it as a time to enter into yourself, a time of reflection, relaxation, and soul-searching.
The term called “Solea” represents the time to enter into your own soul and be inside yourself with no interference. The dance is more constrained, you are in a control that in the dynamic of the dance, you can see the dancer keeping every movement to herself as if talking with her own soul. Contrary to the flamenco dance “Alegrias” or “Bulerias,” where we see the dancer being more outgoing, the dance is free of control and it is more free-flowing, less restrictive, in Solea, there is a strong conversation with the inner-self.
On Solea por Bulerias we see this at the start of the dance, and at the end, the dancer gives us a burst of surprise with fun, more active movements, as if saying, “see, I was sad, reflecting on my own loneliness, but here I am showing off that I don’t care, and life is beautiful.” It is as if saying: “I am happy with my loneliness.”
To learn the Compas of Solea por Bulerias Check this CD:
The meaning of Solea por Bulerias is nothing more than a Solea with its own melody to the rhythm of a Buleria. It is not always understood until you learn to dance it, from there it goes to a feeling inside, a show off of your own pain and at the same time of happiness. To me, Solea por Bulerias has become one of my favorite flamenco styles. When I practice it, and dance to its rhythm, I want to cry and express so much, that if I would be alone, I would yell at the mirror. I have held too much anger inside, the anger that comes from years of discrimination, family issues, the sadness of losing our loved ones, and the incrementation of stress due to meaningless workloads, and the sometimes condescending attitude of superiors or friends. I let it all out in a Solea por Bulerias. This dance lets me say…“I am angry, I am pissed, I am sad, but I am going to enjoy life, and, so what?” Last week in class, with the same song that we practiced for the last three months, I started to get emotional and cry. I quickly fought back the tears to concentrate more and not let the rest of the students or my teacher notice. All I can say is that Solea por Bulerias gives me the chills and I think one of the best aspects of Solea por Bulerias is that it lets you see who in the classroom has suffered the most by seeing how they project their pain or happiness on the dance floor. The fact that some students have to find that in their inner-self and let it out, is therapeutic, and even spellbinding to the viewer.
The historical contribution the Gypsies, the Moors and the Sephardic Jews left with Flamenco, was their cry and pain for years of discrimination, being treated as outcasts, and taken for granted. We can each day see a connection from the cante, the lyrics, and the emotional performance a flamenco dancer gives. If you visit any gypsy village in Spain, you would see the same.
I invite you to check out any of the many Solea por Bulerias videos, and if you like this form of flamenco, you can find them on the links I provide you with. Thanks again for reading. Please, comment about this beautiful flamenco dance.
Examples of Solea por Bulerias Are:
Guitarrists: Paco de Lucia, Adolfo Marquez
Dancers: Eva Yerbabuena, “La Lupi” (Susana Lupiañez) Pastora Galvan, Belen Maya, Sara Baras
La Lupi dancing a Solea por Bulerias
Paco de Lucia in the guitar playing Solea por Bulerias