Bringing Spanish heat to Sadler’s Wells this summer, Flamenco Festival returns for the first time since 2019 with eight dance and four music events across two weeks.
The festival opens with ¡VIVA!, Manuel Liñan’s vibrant expression of being yourself that challenges the defined roles of male and female forms in flamenco. The show is frank and joyous celebration of gay identity, a refreshing contrast to traditional representations of masculinity in flamenco. Further pushing the boundaries of what flamenco can be, Without Permission, Songs for Silence comes from emerging talent Ana Morales, who blends the traditional with the avant-garde. Without Permission, Songs for Silence, looks at memory, delving into the delicate recollections of the artist’s father, his connection to Andalusia and to flamenco, and her own journey to understanding art and its connection to life.
Festival favourites María Pagés and Jesús Carmona will both return with UK premieres. Compañía María Pagés Ode To Time is a journey of reflection, an allegory of the time we live in filled with infinite possibilities. Her powerful, emotive gestures and ferocious footwork combine to create a performance that is theatrical and passionate, whilst also reflective. Accompanied by eight dancers and a delicate original score, An Ode to Time looks at darkness and light, the chance of happiness in uncertain times and the nature of time itself. The aptly dubbed «Catalan virtuoso», Jesús Carmona’s The Jump displays his signature elegant, powerful choreography. The former principal of the Ballet Nacional de España is trained in multiple genres, from flamenco, ballet and tap, to 17th century Italian court dances.The Jump explores art’s ability to affect personal growth, as Carmona looks at his own journey around masculinity in the 21st century.
Meanwhile, the ever popular Gala Flamenca celebrates the three stages of «The Woman», past, present and future. A true, traditional flamenco treat by Compañía María del Mar Moreno, Gala Flamenca features the talents of long-time flamenco dancer La Moneta, and from arguably the most famous Sevillian dynasty in the world of flamenco dancing, Pastora Galván, as well as treasured flamenco vocalist, Tía Juana La del Pipa. Mujeres de CAL y CANTE marks the meeting place of multiple generations of women in an authentic flamenco celebration.
In a flamenco show which transcends genres, El Yiyo explores new sounds, expression without limits and a world of fantasy. Joined by a troupe of artists to accompany him, El Yiyo brings his charisma, authenticity and explosively to create contemporary flamenco with no limits. Boreal is the ﬁrst full length choreography from Daniel Ramos and Víctor Martín, drawing on all elements of traditional Spanish dance at its highest technical, choreographic and artistic level. Former dancers of Ballet Nacional del España, Ramos and Martín display the artistic richness and the technical complexity of Spain’s most traditional dance.
In a showcase of elegance and energy, join award-winning flamenco dancer, Paula Comitre, in this culmination of a week-long artistic residency at Sadler’s Wells.Awarded Best Emerging Artist in 2020 at both the Festival de Jerez and Bienal de Flamenco deSevilla, Paula Comitre is one of the greatest talents of the contemporary flamenco world.
The concerts bring back two hugely popular flamenco musicians to the Sadler’s Wells stage, five-time Latin Grammy Award-winner Tomatito, leading light in the nuevo Flamenco fusion movement which emerged in the 1970s, and Estrella Morente, heiress to one of Spain’s greatest singing dynasties, known to audience for Volver, the soundtrack to the Almodovar film of the same name. The two final music events which close the festival turn the art form on its head: Tercer Cielo (Third Heaven) is the new project by flamenco singer Rocío Márquez, who is joined by urban and electronic music producer Bronquio, and Flamenco is Not a Crime brings a flamenco and dance music party to the Lilian Baylis Studio. DJs Pedro and Benito Jimenez blend grime, gqom, dub, and reggaeton with projections inspired by the Free Party Is Not A Crime movement.
Sadler’s Wells Artistic Director Alistair Spalding said «I’m delighted to welcome Flamenco Festival back to Sadler’s Wells this summer with a fantastic range of contemporary and more traditional flamenco performances. The festival makes a triumphant return for the first time since 2019, with the most shows ever! It offers something for flamenco aficionados and newcomers alike».
Where : Sadler’s Wells Theatre and Lilian Baylis Studio, Rosebury Avenue, London, EC1R 4TB
When : 21 June – 2 July
More info : www.sadlerswells.com | 020 7863 8000