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Farewell, Ate Mayén

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Marién Gómez de Lizares (1968-2011).

The angels in heaven will soon be dancing flamenco. And Marién Gómez de Lizares will be their maestra.

Last night, my dear friend and mentor Señor Guillermo Gómez‘s única hija passed away last night (7:00 PM). She is survived by her husband Paul Lizares, their children (Iñigo, Saulo, and Inés), her brother (Guillermo Gómez y Ordóñez) and sister-in-law, nieces and nephew, and her parents.

I used to see her in my younger years while visiting her dad in Macati. There I watch both father and daughter perform powerful and captivating flamenco performances together with their friends and Japanese students. I will never forget her rendition of the Spanish dance Celos del Viento. It was such a spectacle to see, and it displayed the strength and color of her femininity and grace. And at the end of the dance, she twirled like a tornado without losing the gracefulness of a true performance artist.

Her life was a life of music and dance. Under her illustrious father, Ate Mayén started dancing at a very young age (four years old). Later on, she studied overseas (California, USA) under the tutelage of Maestro Rubén Nieto and acclaimed dancer/choreographer Linda Vega. She then studied ballet at the age of six. This performance dance became a passion of hers which she pursued at the age of thirteen.

She then took up advanced courses at the Academy of the Performing Arts under Alice Parham Juico and Sony López Gonzales. She also studied at the Manila Metropolis Ballet under renowned dance masters Eduardo Mendoza (popularly known as Eddie Elejar) and the late Antonio “Tony” Fabella. She finally became the principal dancer of that group. Her Jazz mentors were Marissa Aboitiz and Douglas Nieras.

Years later, she relocated to Bacólod, Negros Occidental to start a family with Paul Lizares (who is from one of the most illustrious families in the said province) where she worked as a dance instructress at Power Dance Fitness & Dance Studio. She occasionally visited her father in Macati to perform with the latter’s dance group and to assist him with his flamenco students. She also taught jazz, flamenco, and yoga at Lydia Gaston’s School of Dance (also in Bacólod).

Many see her as Don Guimo’s likely successor in the field of Flamenco Filipino. Unfortunately, to borrow from Alanis Morissette, life has a funny way of sneaking up on you when you think everything’s okay and everything’s going right. A few years ago, she was diagnosed with brain cancer, the cause of her passing…

This is a sad moment for Don Guimò. And since his loss is my loss, it is a sad moment for me as well. This is also a sad moment for Philippine Dance. Flamenco Filipino has just lost an icon.

Descanse en paz, Ate Mayén. Vaya con Dios…


8 responses »

  1. My deepest condolences to Sr. Don Guillermo Gomez Rivera, my former mentor in Spanish and former Chair of the Spanish Dept of Adamson U. who lost her only daughter, Mayen,
    I remember her very well during my countless visits in Sr. Gomez’s place in Makati while I was being oriented and trained in the new methods in teaching Spanish. I remember her beauty and charm and her remarkable way she danced the Flamenco. I also included her in my prayers when I got informed of her illness. Now I will start praying for eternal repose. Prayer for souls (Given by the lord to St. Gertrude that releases 1000 souls from Purgatory ) Eternal Father I offer Thee the most Precious Blood of Thy Divine Son Jesus Christ, in union with all the masses being offered today for the Holy Souls in Purgatory., for sinners everywhere,. for sinners in ther Universal Church, those within my home and family . Amen.


  2. You made good in describing her profile and anthology Pepe. Thank you very much for this.


  3. My condolences for the family of Don Guillermo. My heart and mind is with you in this difficult time.


  4. Pingback: Ms. González’s “petty” remark « FILIPINO eSCRIBBLES

  5. Evans R. Centina

    Our thoughts and prayers to the family of Senor Don Guillermo Gomez Rivera in this difficult times.

    from the Celo- Centina family
    Evans, Mary Joan, Marja Katrina & Jon Paolo


  6. To Senior Don Guillermo,Gomez Rivera: please accept our most heartfelt sympathies for your loss…our thoughts are with you and your family during this difficult time.

    Nimtz Christopher Centina and family
    (Leizl, Chester Louis, , Eulo and Gio).


  7. my beloved mayen, wherever you are, i will miss U every single day. since U left this cruel world, there’s no single day i did not dream about U…. i really really miss U a lot! and i am so sorry i never visited U as i’ve promised… GOD BE WITH U. TILL WE MEET AGAIN!!!



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