ARTIST: Miquela Wiegel, dancer, En­trefla­menco, Fla­menco’s Next Gen­er­a­tion PALO: Ale­grías VENUE: The Lodge at Santa Fe

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legrías are happy, up­beat. It’s fun to work with the crowd, to be flir­ta­tious. Fla­menco can be so in­tense, but ale­grías give you a chance to breathe and smile, to get away from the in­ten­sity.” Miquela Wiegel is twenty-one, cur­rently study­ing chem­istry and bi­ol­ogy as a pre-med stu­dent at UNM. She is hop­ing to con­tinue her fla­menco ca­reer as she goes into the health-care field. Last year she lived in Spain and fo­cused on her Span­ish-lan­guage skills as well as her fla­menco, on a UNM semesterabroad pro­gram.

“I went to a María Benítez per­for­mance when I was four. Her in­ten­sity drew me in. I re­mem­ber she was wear­ing a white dress and wore her long black hair down her back. I thought she was the most el­e­gant, beau­ti­ful woman I had ever seen. I wish now that I could see her per­form again, know­ing what I know now.

“I au­di­tioned for Next Gen when I was ten. Be­ing in the com­pany in­stilled great dis­ci­pline. We prac­ticed ev­ery Satur­day for a min­i­mum of four hours. It was un­think­able to miss a re­hearsal. She opened up the world of fla­menco and placed it at our feet. We’re all lit­tle re­flec­tions of María.”

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