First Anniversary of Bullfight Academy in San Miguel
By Martín Padrón
Last year the Academia was born as one of the goals of the Círculo Taurino, a group of bullfighting aficionados. Now this group is not working due to various circumstances. The Academia started classes in May 2014 in the Plaza de Toros, but it was not possible to continue there. Since September of 2014 they have been working in Club de Golf Las Ventanas, where there is a beautiful cortijo (small bullring). The group got permission to use it for its lessons every Saturday, thanks to the matador José Antonio Hernández, who is a rejoneador, and Ricardo Garrido, owner of this development.
The Academia includes the director, Miguel Ángel Herrera, and his father, Pedro Antonio Herrera, as technical assistant. Both were novi-lleros, and every week they come from Celaya to teach boys and girls between six and 19 years old from San Miguel, Celaya, Guanajuato, and Querétaro. These lessons don’t have a cost; the teachers don’t have a salary. They come to the Academia Taurina de San Miguel de Allende only to work with the kids, to share their knowledge and love for the bullfight, with hope of discovering a great torero.
The slogan of the Academia is “Hacer afición es nuestra misión” (make followers is our mission). They love to teach everyone who is interested in learning about the bullfight, and age is not a limit to learning. In several classes there were people 50 to 60 years old excited to try to do their first paseillo. The academia is not just for young people who dream of becoming famous matadores, it is open to anyone interested in this form of expression and everything that it involves.
On Saturday, June 6, to celebrate its first anniversary, there will be a bullfighting event at Las Ventanas and, for everyone who wants to learn, a practical lesson with the famous Spanish matadora Marypaz Vega from Málaga. After the one-hour class, she will fight a bull (bloodless) to teach the young matadors and assist in the event in a more practical way. The young rejoneador Tarik Othon from Querétaro, a member of the Academy, will fight a novillo on horseback (bloodless). Joining him will be the Forcados Queretanos (Portuguese-style bullfighters). The kids of the group will then fight a brave calf to demonstrate their abilities.
After the taurino part there will be a painting and photographic exhibit with Karina Oliver from Celaya and Luis Ceballos from San Miguel, and paintings by Britt Zaist, Henry Vermillion, and Juan Antonio Ruiz from San Miguel.
There will be delicious paella made by chef Paco Vizcaya from Celaya and a talk with the matadora Marypaz Vega about bullfighting, her vision, and experience. Admission is 100 pesos (donation for the Academia, does not includes the paella) and the invitation is open to everybody. The tickets are for sale at Hotel Misión San Miguel de Allende (formerly El Molino) on Salida a Querétaro 1, and at Las Ventanas on the day of the event.