Living the Culture of Mexico through the Dance

Join Jonathan Trejo and Kareli Montoya in this
Special Celebration of Mexican Folkloric Dance!

August 1925, 2018

Jonathan Trejo in Class and Performance
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Mexico is home to a variety of climates and fauna and flora, and has a diversity of music and dance that has made it culturally rich and full of color. Mexican folkloric dance is a wide mixture of cultures, including Arab, Christian, African and Caribbean influences that fuse to create the immense scale of traditions of dance and music — celebrated during holidays across the length and breadth of the country. It is this great cultural mosaic that has identified Mexico throughout the world.

During this week we will focus on Mexican folk dance in two areas: a traditional section that will include dances from various regions of Mexico, with a variety of rhythms; and a creative section where we will explore Ravel’s Boléro, Huapango de Moncayo (a symphonic work by José Pablo Moncayo), and Tchaikovsky’s Waltz of the Flowers where the motives for movement are inspired by the aesthetics of Maestro Rafael Zamarripa.

We will conclude the week with a formal Mexican Folklórico performance on Saturday, August 25, at the Union Hall in Vienna, Maine.

Comments from dancers who have taken Jonathan’s classes :

“My experience with the workshops that you have given me have been nothing but a huge pleasure! You are very professional, knowledgeable, and know how to make the class fun and entertaining, and above all, super respectful! I am immensely happy with what you have taught me, for it has helped me grow so much as a folklorico dancer. You have inspired me to continue growing in the field of folkorico, and I am sure you will continue to do so for others!”  —Victor Alvarez, dancer, Ballet Folklórico of Los Angeles

“When you led at Bearnstow I felt you were very charismatic and clear. Very versatile with many techniques that reach out to a broad range of dance styles and levels. I especially loved the physical consistency of your Horton class—it challenged me. Your class for Adriana was unexpected and broadened my understanding of the capacity for dance and empathy. I was also impressed by the way you engaged the Day Campers in their class—you clearly introduced fundamental technique while having fun; they all left smiling.”  —Ellen Oliver, dancer and choreographer, Resident Artist at Bearnstow 2016

“Jonathan hace un par de años más o menos cuando te conocí, simplemente el saber que eras alumno del gran Maestro Rafael Zamarripa, me entusiasmó muchísimo. Después de integrarme a uno de tus talleres, me fascinaste! Eres simplemente exce­lente como maestro; mucha técnica, mucho enfoque en el cuerpo total y súper ejemplo a seguir. Muy profesional y estricto! Mi hija Citlali opina lo mismo!”  —Adriana Martinez, former folklorico dancer, California

“Mi experiencia con él ha sido bastante satisfactoria, enriquecedora y por qué no formativa, su metodología para la enseñanza de la danza en la técnica Horton, es bastante buena e interesante, con usted aprendí a mover y accionar partes de mi cuerpo que muy pocas veces utilizamos de manera consiente, el desarrollo de la clase es emocionante y de forma gradual el nivel de complejidad que se maneja en la misma, aprendí demasiado de usted ya que ahora tengo una enorme curiosidad por ahondar más en esta técnica, le agradezco Maestro Jonathan excelente Licenciado en Danza Escénica orgullo de nuestra alma mater Universidad de Colima.”  —Gustavo Caudillo, bailarín profesional y Licenciado en Danza Escénica

Jonathan Trejo, from Ciudad Juarez, Mexico, is a professional dancer at Ballet Folklórico of the University of Colima, Mexico,
and is a consultant, choreographer and honorary assistant director for Ballet Folklórico of Los Angeles. He also teaches art in elementary school in Colima. He has a bachelor’s degree in Art with major in Stage Dance from the University of Colima.

Jonathan has been dancing his entire life. After beginning foklorico with a small group in his hometown, he began his study as professional at the University of Colima with the great Mexican artist Rafael Zamarripa (choreographer, sculptor, artist, director). From there, he continued with several courses, workshops and seminars with such masters as Christine Dakin, Kazuko Hirabayashi, Julius Brewster-Cotton, Duane Gosa, among others.

Kareli Montoya and Jonathan Trejo

Jonathan has been teaching and promoting the Mexican folk dance and Zapateado tech­nique in California, Nevada and Texas as well as in Mexico. He specializes in the train­ing of Mexican folk dancers, dance for children, stage lighting, and in creating movement from the exploration of emotion and energy.

Kareli Montoya founded Ballet Folklórico de Los Ángeles in 2011 and BFLA
Performing Arts Academy, currently known as the Ballet Folklorico Company in 2013. Kareli has co-produced six concerts for Star Entertainment, a non-profit production company owned by Dr. Raul Ruiz, who has created high quality cultural concerts for over ten years. Kareli has choreographed over 50 original pieces for her dance company, Mitu, Lilit Hovhannisyan, the San Bernardino Symphony, and the Culver City Symphony. In March of 2017 she choreographed the Mariachi Remake "A Tale as Old as Time" for Mitu Network. The video went viral at nearly 14 million views in less than a month! Get to know Maestra Kareli through her Folklorico Blog and Tutorials here:

Jonathan Trejo and Kareli Montoya have been working together since 2012 creating several choreographic works, leading work­shops, co-producing concerts, and dancing together on several stages in Las Vegas, Nevada; Los Angeles, Santa Barbara, San Ber­nardino, Culver City, Redlands and Commerce in California; Murfreesboro, Tennessee; and Guadalajara, Jalisco and Colima in Mexico.
Contact for more information.

Sign up for this special celebration now:  Registration Form — Summer 2018

The 2017 Jonathan Trejo and Kareli Montoya Workshop

Top row: Jonathan Trejo, Angie Cole, Ruth Grauert, Marc Ferraro, Kereli Montoya, Nitzia Vieyra;
Front row: Chaesong Kim, Ellen Oliver, Mario Hernández, and Divyamaan Sahoo