Anna's Journey

Flamenco

In Sanlucar la Mayor on November 13, 2010 at 1:40 pm

Flamenco stands in sharp contrast to the tranquilo, no paso nada attitude of Andalucians. Flamenco singers belt their hearts out, turning red with passion, singing of suffering and loss, love and yearning. The entire range of human emotion – from extreme happiness to the utmost pain and loss is represented in the voices of the singers, the turns of the dancers, and the quick ballads of the guitars.

 Last night, we attended a free flamenco performance in our town. Tucked away on a side street to the left of the infamous restaurant Venta Pazo, the Pena Cultural Flamenca houses a small tapas bar, with a stage, and seating/dining area. We ordered a tinto verano, and sat at a table tucked into the corner of the room. After a lengthy introduction (the performance was a memoria to a famous Flamenco singer), the singer and guitarist took the stage.

 The performance began with the singer making jokes and asking his granddaughter to bring him a cafe to erase a lingering cough. But once the guitarist plucked his first chords, silence fell on the room. The singer clapped his hands softly to the fast-paced rhythm of the guitar, while the audience stomped their feet. When he opened his mouth to sing, the singer transported us back in time to a land of hard work and deep spiritual beliefs. He was a Jewish cantor, a Muslim muezzin, an ancient voice echoing through the ages. As the guitar picked up its pace, he sang louder and louder, barely stopping to breathe.

 Finally, at the end of the performance, the passion literally picked him up out of his chair, as he pushed aside his microphone, tripped over the chord, and ran to the back wall. The audience cheered “Ole!” and the singer was suddenly back to the present, a laidback, jovial, tranquilo Andalucian guy.

A passionate flamenco singer

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  1. As usual all msg are interesting..did you know that the greatest flamenco male dancer was Jose Greco, an italian from Bklyn,NY??I was priv. to see him and his troupe years ago in New Bedford.

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