As some of you may know, I love to dance El Sanjuanito. Actually, I love dancing the following genres: Merengue, Salsa, Mapale, Soca Chutney, Bollywood, Cumbia Mexicana, Cumbia Colombiana, and Quebradita. But my favorite is El Sanjuanito.
This is an Indigenous dance from Quechua communities in Southern Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia, and Northern Chile and we celebrate it during the Inti Raymi festival along with other solstice festivities.
My mother taught me El Sanjuanito when I was eight years old. When I went to middle school and high school, I danced alone in my bedroom. I put the music on the boombox and taught myself the steps, the swings, and the turns just like she taught me. I admired the colorful dresses and ponchos.
I love listening to the sound of panpipes, violins, guitars, and the drums that beat the rhythm of my heart and feet.
When I went to college, I made a commitment to get El Sanjuanito out there on campus. I formed a new group the first year and we performed on a few cultural shows, which was inspiring to the audience. Every year since, I formed new groups to perform more complicated steps on larger cultural shows.
This year, I want to form a new group and perform in New York City. I am looking for a total of 16 people who will be willing to commit to rehearsals at least twice a week (preferably on weekends) and perform on weekends in New York City and possibly, in New England and Washington D.C in Spring 2014. I am also looking for volunteers who can assist Christine Han, the Costume Designer, with any designing of the traditional clothing for the dance. If your university, club, or community is interested in helping us find space to rehearse and/or promote the event in your area, please e-mail me with the information.
Ideally, rehearsals will take place on December-March and we will start performing on mid-March-June, the final performance will most likely fall on the Inti Raymi festival.
If you are interested or know someone who is interested, please share this blog with your network and have them contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.