Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Flamenco: A Quick Guide

One of the main attractions at Café Sevilla is our authentic Spanish Flamenco show, which started at our original San Diego location more than 20 years ago in a bare downstairs room with one light bulb, and has since grown into a spectacular dinner show that draws crowds every weekend at all three locations.

Widely praised as the most authentic, consistently high-quality Flamenco presentation in Southern California, Sevilla’s show is performed by talented and experienced artists who have all trained extensively in Spain, the home of Flamenco. Experiencing our dinner show is the closest thing to sitting in a real Spanish tablao that you will find on this side of the Atlantic.If you’ve never seen a Flamenco performance, you might be curious or confused about what you are about to see before you decide to make a reservation. Here’s some basic info to get you started:

Flamenco has been part of the Spanish heart and culture for more than 500 years. It is the passionate, sometimes melancholy music of the gypsies of Andalusia, heavily influenced by the Moors of North Africa who ruled Spain for more than 800 years.

Gathered around a campfire for the night with their guitars, drums and castañets, gypsies would spontaneously break into a juerga, an impromptu outburst of guitarra (guitar playing), cante (song) and baile (dance), rhythmically snapping their fingers (pitos), clapping (palmas), and stamping their feet (zapateados). Over the years this evolved into a dance form with its own songs and traditions, including the women’s costumes of long, flared skirts and fringed shawls that accentuate every twirl.

The relationship between dancer and guitarist makes flamenco a unique dance form. Contrary to most dance forms, it is the guitarist who follows the dancer’s prompts. Duende, the baring of one’s soul in all its frank emotion, is another crucial element of Flamenco. Passion, longing, and a deep pride are the feelings most frequently expressed through these dances and songs.

A real Flamenco performance is an unforgettable experience. We hope you’ll come see our talented artists soon. For details of the Flamenco show at each location, and to make a reservation, please visit our website. ¡Olé!

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