The Rapidian

Crowd cheers on Hispanic Flamenco Ballet at Wealthy Theatre

Underwriting support from:

To air on GRTV

Although the date and time has yet to be determined, the Community Media Center's GRTV will air both acts in full on its channels. For announcements of shows and to catch snippets from nearly 30 years' worth of community programming, follow GRTV on Facebook.

/Denise Cheng

On Wednesday morning, the Hispanic Flamenco Ballet's charter bus pulled up to Wealthy Theatre. Not far away were a swarm of yellow buses carrying more than 300 students. Billed on the dance company's website as the best option for student field trips, this was their fourth year in Grand Rapids performing for area K-12 schools.

"The mission is to deliver culture for all American people and all Spanish and Latin American people because sometimes the sense from this country [is] they don't know their heritage. They don't know 'where I'm from?' 'How is my country?' 'How is the country of my father, my mother?' We leave for the students this culture," said Fernanda Amaral who helps produce the performances.

The company currently performs exclusively for schools. Schools that work with HFB, a nonprofit dance company, can select from a menu of two one-hour acts. The first is a smattering of Latin American music and dance from Chile, Peru, Mexico and African-influenced dances that highlight dance props and the intricacies of footwork. The second is a narrative act that jumps through various centuries in Spanish performance and visits the history of traveling troubadours.

"They are professionals in their area," Amaral explained of the performers who hail from Spain, Uruguay, Cuba, Venezuela and Brazil. "They [go] back to their countries [when they are not on tour with HFB] and they perform for other companies."

HFB has been performing for seven years, tours during the spring and fall and travels with a company of 10 performers and two technical staffers. They will travel to 60 cities during the fall season.

The Rapidian, a program of the 501(c)3 nonprofit Community Media Center, relies on the community’s support to help cover the cost of training reporters and publishing content.

We need your help.

If each of our readers and content creators who values this community platform help support its creation and maintenance, The Rapidian can continue to educate and facilitate a conversation around issues for years to come.

Please support The Rapidian and make a contribution today.

Comments, like all content, are held to The Rapidian standards of civility and open identity as outlined in our Terms of Use and Values Statement. We reserve the right to remove any content that does not hold to these standards.