Cultural Work

Jaranas in a tarimaSeattle Fandango Project

Since fall of 2009, I have been a participant in Seattle Fandango Project (SFP), a collective that cultivates “convivencia” or the art of living/being together with diverse communities and organizations in Seattle and fandango practitioners from other parts of the United States and Mexico, via participatory music and dance. We play and dance son jarocho, which is rooted in the fandango traditions of Veracruz, Mexico, and the broader community arts movement Fandango Sin Fronteras (Fandango Without Borders), built over the last decade by musicians and community organizers in Veracruz, California, and Chicago.

SFP offers free weekly public workshops on Saturdays at 1:00 pm.  Group learning integrates people of different ages, skill levels and cultural backgrounds. Please consult our calendar for workshop locations and other upcoming events, including monthly fandangos.

En la tarimaFunctioning both as individuals and as a collective, SFP members have produced a remarkable array of projects, ranging from visual art to to a variety of music programs with local schools to working in the broader Afro-Latino arts community in the Seattle area. Recent collaborators have included Casa Latina, El Centro de la Raza and  Seattle World School. A recent project we produced was  the Encuentro Fandanguero del Pacific Northwest (film by Angelica and Scott Macklin), which provided an opportunity for reflection on the history and diversity of the fandango movement.
Las Mujeres de SFP by Yesenia Navarette Hunter

Las Mujeres de SFP by Yesenia Navarette Hunter

We have also built strong ties with a number of University of Washington departments, including The School of Music, The School of Social Work, The Simpson Center for the Humanities, and Gender, Women, and Sexuality Studies.

Seattle Fandango Project receives 2012 UW Diversity Award for Community Building

We are blessed to have a number of media producers in the community who have documented SFP and the larger fandango movement. Here are several examples:

Seattle Fandango Project by Jill Freidberg for the Seattle Channel, 2010

TEDxSeattle talk, 2010 by Kristina Clark, Martha Gonzalez, Carrie Lanza, and Francisco Orozco. Featuring Quetzal Flores, Laura Rebelloso and Iris Viveros Avendano. 

Convivencia on Campus, 2010. Produced by Carrie Lanza, shot by Carrie Lanza and Scott Macklin, edited by Brian Nunes. This project was the result of an American Music Partnership of Seattle fellowship examining the impact of the Seattle Fandango Project’s presence at the University of Washington.

 Recursos Fandangueros: Mapping the Fandango: by Cameron Quevedo

Jarocho! On the roots of son Jarocho in Veracruz. Shot and directed by Akira Boch, produced by Quetzal Flores.

Seattle Fandango Project Youtube Channel is a treasure trove of interviews with maestros of the tradition and other films produced by Scott Macklin.

Fandango praxis has proven transformative both personally and from a scholarly perspective- dramatically shifting my thinking about a variety of topics, including the relationship between Mexico and the United States; the processes of arts collectives; considering the significance of cultivating joy as a community organizing strategy; theories of embodiment and healing in dance; and the roll of music in transnational social movements. It has been both a privilege and a joy to be a part of this community of artists, activists, and scholars.