Story: Flamenco Hoy

Adelaide Festival Theatre

Film director Carlos Saura brings his first live work for the stage to South Australia with Flamenco Hoy for the Adelaide Festival in 2013. The Spanish director is also an accomplished writer, producer and actor whose interest in cinema started at a young age; making his first movie on 16mm film as a teenager in 1950.

A well accepted director internationally he has been the recipient of several awards, and notably nominated for an Oscar for the film ‘Mamá cumple 100 años’ (1979). The show premiered in Madrid, before touring to Poland and Barcelona then opened in New York in 2011 and recently completed a successful tour of Canada. Flamenco Hoy makes its first visit to Australia for an exclusive Adelaide premiere in the Adelaide Festival Friday 15th and Saturday 16th of March 2013.

Saura has been described as a leading proponent for the Spanish dance genre, flamenco, and has been a leading ambassador for the last few decades. Saura is famous for a trilogy of films depicting the flamenco style, namely ‘Bodas de sangre’, ‘Carmen’, and ‘El amor brujo’. Carmen, filmed in 1983 was a film adaption of the novel of the same name by Prosper Mérimée and used music from the opera by Georges Bizet. The film also won the BAFTA award for Best Foreign Language Film as well as the Technical Grand Prize and the Best Artistic Contribution at the Cannes Film Festival in 1983.

In 2012, Saura filmed ‘Flamenco, Flamenco’, a movie which looked at the history and traditions of flamenco music and dance. The film has been described as the greatest exponent of Saura’s particular way of producing musical cinema through music, dance and song.

The title of the stage show ‘Flamenco Hoy’ translates literally to ‘flamenco today’ and features a troupe of 11 spirited dancers choreographed by Rafael Estevez and Nani Paños. The production also features 4 cantaores (singers of flamenco) who interpret the compositions of internationally renowned Spanish pianist Chano Dominguez.

The show is Saura’s take on modern flamenco and incorporates musicians on piano, saxophone, flute, keyboards and cajón (box shaped percussion instrument), together with guitar virtuoso Antonio Rey, winner of the National Guitar Award. The show promises Broadway standards, visually spectacular scenography and plenty of energetic rhythms and beats which connect the world of flamenco to contemporary jazz and ballet.

Adelaide Festival Artistic Director David Sefton said “Flamenco productions tend to be traditional and minimal; Flamenco Hoy is a game changer. Carlos Saura has created an evening of dance that has a real cinematic quality, with outstanding music and dance from Spain’s top performers. ”

Described as a daring expedition through the past, present and future it promises to be an outstanding piece of dance theatre.

Paul Rodda

When: 15 to 16 Mar
Where: Festival Theatre