Take a break. Come and join a jazz festival with flamenco flavor! Jazz Madrid 2020 has been conceived as an act of solidarity with a sector that is being pummeled by the virus with extraordinary force.
In 2010, UNESCO inscribed the flamenco of Spain in its list of Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity. The only agency within the United Nations system with a specific mandate in culture, UNESCO says flamenco is an artistic expression fusing soulful song, dance and musicianship that embraces a gamut of feelings and states of mind: grief, joy, tragedy, rejoicing, fear.
With huge loses under the circumstances, owner of Casa Patas Martín Guerrero said: “To reopen [Casa Patas] would be suicidal. A debacle. To swim against the current only to end up drowning.” He added: “I have no choice but to shut down. How can I pay my twenty-four employees?” In November 2000, The New York Times wrote: “For flamenco aficionados, there’s only one destination. Since opening in 1983, Casa Patas has built a reputation as the best club in Spain to see this ancient, haunting art form.” But on March 13, 2020, Patas had to go. However, it seems all isn’t lost, faint though the glimmer of hope is, when Guerrero appended: “Who knows when this Spanish custom will be able to return once again after the pandemic.”
Noche Flamenca’s “Antigona” in the Time of Corona: At Home with Soledad Barrio and Martín Santangelo »
Bessie Award-winning bailaora/choreographer Soledad Barrio is an intuitive and internal performer who possesses a preternatural connection to her character. She identifies with Antigona, “one of [whose] character traits is to love more than herself. She’s very passionate, and her objective is to take care of her family. It’s related to my life to be connected with family. One part of flamenco is love, passion and concern about the family unit. I connect with that a lot, too.” Noche Flamenca’s production of “Antigona” at La MaMa in Manhattan, scheduled for March 19-April 5, was cancelled due to the corona virus travel restrictions from Europe in March. Then all of New York went into lockdown. Shut in with husband choreographer/producer Martín Santangelo, Barios says “I’m diving into the abyss so I can resuscitate when this is over.”
Flamenco Festival is dedicated to the promotion of flamenco artists outside of Spain, its annual international events showcasing the leading names in flamenco today, from world renowned artists and icons of traditional flamenco to the most innovative, emerging young stars. Flamenco Festival USA is a showcase for Spanish artists in New York, Washington DC, Miami, Boston, and other cities across the US. The New York City Center Flamenco Festival 20/20 celebrates the 20th season of this citywide event from March 27 to April 5.
Round about 40 years ago I arrived in Spain as a young thing, enamored of the guitar and Flamenco music. I had been fiddling around with the guitar since my teen years, and never quite got the hang of it, but carrying around a guitar got me into some circles of people who were more expert than I. I love the guitar too much to murder it with my unprofessional playing. Well, after all my experiences with the guitar in Spain, where the heart and soul of this iconic musical instrument will always be, I gave away my original guitar.
"I don't know what the smashed castanets meant, but the intrepid Olga Pericet is certainly a master of smashing tradition as her new all-Spanish show honoring the legendary bailaora Carmen Amaya demonstrated. Amaya (1918-1963) has just been called the greatest flamenco dancer of her generation"
I am anything but Spanish and perhaps that's why I can be somewhat objective about the way Spaniards tend to be depicted, saddled as they are with "topicos tipicos" that tend to arise in a discussion about Spain: flamenco, bullfight, tapas, paradores nacionales. . .
Paco de Lucia: “My music has always been cornered in Andalucia, without prestige, even in Spain itself. For many centuries it was thought of simply as gypsy music, from a people without a social class. As a representative of my music I feel I have an obligation to share it, so that everyone will recognize its value and know its worth… This is what I fight for, and why I work, not for money or to be a star.”
Fame is not what Paco de Lucia is looking for, he says. "It ties you up and takes away. . . an indefinable freshness out of your life.” It's bothersome when people recognize him in the streets, though “at first there is a time when vanity makes you like it. . .”