Into the Heart of Flamenco with Falcon

“The south of Spain is known for its old-fashioned approach to life”

Sunday markets and spontaneous flamencos still reign supreme here…

  • Into the Heart of Flamenco with Falcon

    The south of Spain is known for its old-fashioned approach to life. Sunday markets and spontaneous flamencos still reign supreme here. Uncover Spain’s awe-inspiring traditions and experience the passion of a live flamenco performance with a holiday to Costa del Sol.

    Flamenco music and its origins

    Flamenco music is over 200 years old and has its roots in Andalusian and Romani culture. Traditionally, it was a spontaneous, outdoor, family-oriented activity, and songs were performed to express some of life’s pains and sorrows and bring joy to those who listened to the music. Today, to add to their performances, Spanish flamenco dancers have adopted the traditional ruffled flamenco dresses that originated from Romani culture in the early 19th and 20th centuries.

    The key elements of flamenco

    Very early forms of flamenco music were made up of little more than singing. A simple beat may have been tapped out with a foot or a stick, but the most important part of the music was the singing and lyrics. The style has evolved immensely since then and flamenco dancing and flamenco guitar are just as important to flamenco performances.

    Today, flamenco is made up of four key elements: voice (cante), dance (baile), guitar (toque) and ‘jaleo’, which translates to something approaching ‘commotion’. The jaleo element of flamenco involves hand clapping, foot stomping and general shouts of encouragement, which are performed by the artists on stage and supported by the audience. For flamenco music to really work, the elements must all complement each other and work in harmony to create music which radiates energy and passion.

    Close up of a flamenco guitarist playing the guitar

    Spain’s most influential flamenco artists

    Paco de Lucia and Camarón de la Isla worked together from 1969 to 1977. The pair recorded various albums and spent many nights touring together before parting ways to pursue their blossoming careers. Both artists quickly became flamenco legends in their own right.

    Paco de Lucia became known as the greatest flamenco guitarist ever to live, before passing away in 2014, and several decades after his death in 1992, Camarón de la Isla is still regarded as the greatest flamenco singer ever. The two artists had distinct styles that made them incredibly popular in Spain and all over Europe.

    Experience flamenco for yourself

    Want to witness one of Spain’s legendary flamencos for yourself? Take a holiday to the Costa del Sol and you’ll find a range of establishments with fabulous flamenco performers who take to the stage every night. Staying in Benalmadena? Take an evening visit to Tablao Arte Flamenco and experience a 60-minute flamenco performance that’s bound to be the highlight of your holiday. Alternatively, visit one of Torremolinos’s best flamenco tablaos, Los Tarantos, for a night of singing and dancing delight!

    Close up of flamenco performers dancing on the stage

    Perhaps experiencing this soulful form of Spanish music, you’ll develop a taste for flamenco yourself. If you feel the flamenco rhythms calling you, why not head into Málaga city and attend a few flamenco dancing or guitar lessons during your stay?  You can come back from your holiday with a cool skill to show off at parties.

Author: Carol Oconnor