Bringing an Hispanic Tradition to America
Director: Brent Morris and Reinhard Lorenz
USA, 2011, 51 min.
This engaging film shows how a dedicated teacher and community organizer in New Mexico brought a colorful, passionate Hispanic dance to America. At the National Institute of Flamenco, founded by Eva Sandoval, viewers watch her students move to the pulsing rhythms of the music under her demanding supervision. Students of all ages spend long hours of grueling practice, some with hopes of becoming professional flamenco dancers. In addition to her work at the institute, Eva works as a professor at the University of New Mexico, where she has created what is considered the premiere course of flamenco study in the United States.
The film dazzles with the throbbing rhythms of the music and the punctuated, demanding movements of the dancers. By shadowing individuals across various stages of the journey — from introductory student to professional — viewers begin to understand what inspires them. Through hard work and dedication, Eva’s tutelage becomes a means to understand the culture and tradition of this fascinating art form and its meaning in twenty-first century America.