Bailadores de Bronce: A Seattle celebration of Mexican dance

Julian Perez and Andrea LaVare Malagon practice with Bailadores de Bronce CQ, a Mexican folkloric dancing troupe, on a recent evening at the Seattle Center armory building. A group of University of Washington students started the group in 1972 to share pride in their Mexican heritage through highly choreographed dance and music. The group is celebrating it’s 45th anniversary this year with a special performance with more than 30 dances at 7 p.m. Saturday, June 24, 2017 at UW’s Meany Hall. 
Sarah Ramirez, 17, of Sammamish, joined the group a few years ago. She learned the intricate footwork, skirtwork and facial expressions share deep stories with rich history.
“Every state in Mexico has its own style of dance,” says Ramirez. “It has its own dresses, its own music, it’s own certain steps….When people see us dance they see a part of Mexico. For example, my grandma, or my aunts or my mom when they see me they always end up crying because it’s something they left behind… They remember their childhood and they remember all of the happy times.”
Her high school classmate Anthony Hernandez, 17, said he didn’t grow up with a lot of Hispanic influences and dancing helped him find a deeper understanding of himself.
“It’s definitely made me realize that this is part of who I am,” Hernandez says, “It’s really helped me connect back to my Hispanic roots and it’s really important for me to keep doing it and make sure I can share it with as many people as I can.”
For Gino Garcia, 29, who moved to Seattle four years ago, joining the the troupe helped build community and make Washington feel more like home. He said Bailadores de Bronce builds community connections, keeps storytelling alive and preserves and promotes culture.
“It’s so important right now because there are a lot of people who are feeling scared, they are feeling like maybe their lives or their rights are at stake,” says Garcia.  “Doing these dances and being a part of thi

The group is celebrating its 45th anniversary this year in a special performance with more than 30 dances at 7 p.m. Saturday, June 24, at UW’s Meany Hall.  WATCH

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