Fourteen-year-old Flamenco dancer, Kimberly Chan

How did you first get into flamenco dancing?
I got into flamenco when I was nine or 10. I was introduced to it by my tap teacher, Rose Borromeo. She kindled my interest in the dance and has been a very great influence in my journey to master flamenco.
Ever stepped on your flowing skirt?
Many times, but thank goodness not during a show!
The dance involves quite a bit of clapping too. Do your hands hurt?
It wasn’t just my hands which hurt. As the beat gets faster, my arms started aching too. There is a certain technique in which you clap, and then it was just a matter of mastering and getting used to it!
Why do flamenco dancers stand motionless for the first few seconds, before jumping into action?
Dancing is like telling a story. Standing still builds tension in a dance. It gives a dancer a chance to immerse herself further in the story she is telling, to get the audience’s attention. In a very intense choreography, it provides the dancer a gap, a chance to catch her breath before she explodes into action.
The flamenco dance is supposed to be hot and sexy. Do you have to be subdued in your moves since you’re only 14?
I think that the moment I start performing, it doesn’t matter what age I am, because I’m not Kimberly anymore. I am playing the part of someone else. I believe that I should play every part I am given to the best of my abilities, even if it calls for me to be hot and sexy. Besides, not all types of flamenco dancing needs to be sexy. Some may need me to express the intensity and sadness of a grown-up. Either way, it’s a challenge.