Musical guests speak with, perform for Spanish classes

Sydney Stone March 11, 2016 1
Musical guests speak with, perform for Spanish classes
Ben Woods and Arlene Hurtado perform for Archer spanish students. The duo performed three songs and spoke about the music that they create. Photographer: Syd Stone '16.

Archer parent, CEO and founder of Cordoba Guitars Tim Miklaucic spoke with two Spanish classes at Archer on Friday, Feb. 12. He brought guitarist Ben Woods and flamenco dancer Arlene Hurtado with him.

Spanish teacher Annie Santana organized the presentation in an effort to create a “new type of learning experience.”

“The music [lesson] was the first step of lessons in which the students are engaged in the target language but it’s not about the target language. It’s the idea of immersion — using the language but not for the purpose of learning grammar — which I feel is much more motivating to students,” she said.

During the presentation, Miklaucic spoke about the progression of the guitar over time and demonstrated the differences in sound. He also explained the company’s namesake, “Cordoba.” He named the company after the city in southern Spain because of its history of tolerance of religions and cultures.

Woods and Hurtado then performed three dances and songs for the crowd.

Hurtado has been dancing for 18 years.

“As a flamenco dancer, it’s a little bit different than other dance forms because I am not dancing to [Woods’] music, we are creating music in the moment like jazz musicians, so I have to be very knowledgeable of the song forms equally as he has to be,” she said.

Hurtado then taught the students to dance to Woods’ music.

“It was really cool to watch an authentic dancer perform to live music and to learn about how the rhythms of the songs influence the dancer’s movement,” Maddie Arzt ’16, an AP Spanish student, said.

One Comment »

  1. Miriam Otero March 21, 2016 at 9:52 AM -

    What an incredible opportunity for our language learners! Anyone who has learned a language will tell you that it is just as important to get to know a culture from the language you are learning, as it is to learn the grammar.