A&M International Offers Ballet Folklorico Class for Children

Texas A&M International University's Office of Continuing Education will conduct a class in "Mexican Ballet Folklorico" for boys and girls ages 6 - 14 on Saturdays beginning April 4.

The class will be held in the Kinesiology/Convocation Building on the University's main campus, 5201 University Boulevard, on Saturday mornings April 4, 18, and 25, and May 2 and 9.

Boys and girls ages 6 - 11 will meet from 10 - 11 a.m. Boys and girls ages 12 - 14 will meet from 11:15 a.m. - 12:15 p.m.

At the conclusion of the class, a group performance date will also be scheduled.

Tuition is $30. Children who enroll in the class do not need to have prior knowledge or background in Ballet Folklorico.

All class participants must wear shoes with a heel. Boys should dress in casual, comfortable clothing. Girls should wear a casual top or, preferably, a black leotard with white tights, and a solid color Mexican Ballet Folklorico practice skirt. A skirt pattern is available upon request.

Students who participate in the class will learn the basic footwork or "zapatedo" of Mexican ballet folklorico. Students will also learn performance techniques and Mexican folk dances. Mexican culture, traditions, and customs will be explored.

The class will be conducted by Gabriela Mendoza, Dance Director of the Cigarroa High School Ballet and the University's Ballet Folklorico group, and Associate Director of the University's Office of Student Development.

Prior to joining the University, Mendoza was a member of a professional dance troupe, Roy Lozano's Ballet Folklorico de Tejas, in Austin from 1991 to 1995. While a student at the University of Texas at Austin, she danced with El Grupo de Danza y Arte Folklorico de la Universidad de Texas en Austin from 1989 to 1991.

In the coming months, Mendoza will also direct a weekly children's Mexican Ballet Folklorico performance class, the Ballet Folklorico Infantil de A&M International, to be offered by the University's Office of Continuing Education.

To register for the Mexican Ballet Folklorico class for children or for more information, please call the University's Office of Continuing Education at 326-2700, or visit offices in the Sue and Radcliffe Killam Library Administration Building Room 332 West. University office hours are 8 a.m. - 5 p.m. Monday - Friday.

Journalists who need additional information or help with media requests and interviews should contact the Office of Public Affairs and Information Services at pais@tamiu.edu