Sunday, December 27, 2009

Soledad Barrio and Noche Flamenca at Lucille Lortel Theatre

Madrid’s Noche Flamenca is recognized as the most authentic flamenco touring ensemble and likes to call New York City home in the winter months. We are lucky to get a chance to see these emotional performances at the Lucille Lortel Theatre this year. Noche Flamenca celebrates the essence, purity and integrity of traditional flamenco. Flamenco is made up of three elements cante (song), Baile (dance), and Toque (guitar). Some say song is the heart of flamenco, but most people recognize it because of the Dance that uses the arms and elbows with rhythmic stomping of the feet. In Spain flamenco came from a blending of the local customs with Arabic and Gypsy Cultures. This song and dance where a tradition during the retaking of the Iberian Peninsula from the Moors that took over 800 years in the Middle Ages. Then in the Golden Age of Flamenco this art went from groups in town squares to public performances in cafés cantantes. This is when the Guitar players supporting the dancers became more and more prevalent. The first guitars are thought to have originated in Spain in the 15Th century. With so much history one can see why this is not like any other art form. In this dance company you get a true communal spirit with the singers, dancers and musicians. Noche Flamenca has been the passion of Artistic Director Martín Santangelo and wife Soledad Barrio since 1993. When Soledad Barrio takes the stage its such an emotional experience. She is considered one of the greatest performers of her time. Soledad Barrio has won awards from over 12 different countries for her excellence in dance. The singing is so heart felt along with the beautiful strumming of the guitars and the expressive Dance, it's just so moving. Everyone in New York has only till January 16 catch the world renowned Noche Flamenca.

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