Hire a Spanish Flamenco Dancer

Hire a Spanish Flamenco Dancer for any Spanish themed event.

I often receive enquiries from people who want to know if I can bring a Flamenco Dancer with me.

The answer is absolutely yes and I have thought that perhaps a helpful way to supply the relevant information in in question answer form based upon the enquiries that I receive.

Are your flamenco dancers professional?

Yes, all of my flamenco dancers are professionally trained in Spain.

Are all your dancers Spanish?

Usually yes, but I also work with dancers from South American countries who have not only trained in their country of origin but have also lived, trained and performed flamenco dance in Spain.

What is the fee for a flamenco dancer?

Between 100.00 and 500.00 UK Pounds depending on the length of their performance, the  distance needed to travel and any overnight accommodation expenses.

Will you accompany them with flamenco guitar playing?

Yes, this is vital for the following reason:

Although my dancers do have a pre- prepared choreography they also like to have the freedom to develop their dances on the spur of the moment. In this situation they no longer dance to my music.

It is a case of me following them. I have to try to anticipate what they are going to do next and provide the correct music for each section of their flamenco dance.

Incidentally this is the authentic original way of performing flamenco.

For more information on my work please see: Hire Book a Spanish Flamenco Guitarist.

What kind of floor space do flamenco dancers need?

Flamenco dancers need wooden floors so that you can hear the flamenco footwork.  They can adapt their choreographies to a small space but the larger the dance space that is available the better.

Will your flamenco dancers have beautiful flamenco costumes?

Yes, they always have several genuine flamenco costumes from Spain and they like to change several times so that their costume suits the mood of each dance.

Will there only be one flamenco dance after another?

No. This could be too much of the same thing for your audience.

Normally the format is a guitar solo to get the audience in the mood, followed by a flamenco dance and then perhaps a duet of castanets and guitar. Then further developments of this theme.

This seems to work very well but we would need to discuss with you to make sure it fits with your plans for your event.

Do you both need a changing room?

That would be great but we can work with whatever is available. It is more important that the dancer should have  a changing space.

Hire book a Spanish Flamenco Guitarist

Hire a Flamenco Guitarist for weddings, corporate events, Spanish themed events, private parties, restaurants and celebrations.

If you would like to book a flamenco guitarist to play for your event here is all the information in question and answer form:

 

How do we contact you to hire you for our event?

Phone me or e mail me from my contact page.

What is your fee?

Between £100.00 and £500.00 depending on playing time and distance.

What sort of events do you play for?

I play for all and any events where clients feel that Spanish Flamenco and Classical Guitar would be appropriate. These include but not exclusively: weddings, golf clubs, Spanish restaurants, any restaurant with a Spanish theme such as a paella or tapas afternoon or night, private parties, wine tasting events, cultural events, Spanish funerals where the deceased was typically Spanish and loved Spanish music, baptisms and events welcoming babies into the world.

How long will you play for?

As long as you need. We can discuss this.

Do you play only Flamenco Guitar Music?

No, I play Flamenco Guitar Music and Spanish Classical Guitar music and a very few Latin pieces?

Can we hear you? Do you have any videos of your playing?

Yes, there are sound clips of my flamenco guitar playing throughout this website and videos on the video page.

Can you also bring a Flamenco Dancer to our event?

Yes, please view the information Hire a Spanish Flamenco Dancer and  the Flamenco Dancer page for more information.

Do you have genuine good reviews from happy clients?

Yes, these can be read on my testimonials page.

Can you provide a professional contract?

Yes, as a member of the Musicians’ Union I can provide a Musicians’ Union contract but it is not at all a requirement.

Our e mails constitute an agreement.

Do you have Public Liability Insurance?

Yes, as a member of the Musicians’ Union I have Public Liability Insurance but in almost all cases the venue will prefer their own insurance.

 

 

 

Spanish Event Flamenco Dancer and Guitarist

I was booked through and agency together with a flamenco dancer to provide an evening of flamenco dancing and guitar playing for a private party for one of their clients.

In fact it turned out that the party was not so much a Spanish themed event as in fact a Spanish party; that is to say an event with a great many Spanish people.

When Spanish people hire me for an event this is usually very good news and this occasion was no exception.

It does not follow that just because people are Spanish that they will necessarily know about Spanish culture and flamenco music and dance in particular but when they hire performers to provide this kind of Spanish Flamenco performance it does often mean that they are very familiar with flamenco.

Our hosts and their guests for the evening were fabulously appreciative of the flamenco dances, guitar solos and duets of guitar and castanets. It is important to point out that the non Spanish people were absolutely wonderful, they genuinely respected and enjoyed the guitar and dance and we are delighted to have had the opportunity to have performed for all the people present on that wonderful evening.

Of course people applauded as audiences do but they also approached us with interesting questions and comments on our work in addition to requesting certain Spanish flamenco pieces that they knew and loved.

It is always great to be able to play the requests that people have and if I know in advance sometimes I can learn a specific composition if it is not already in my repertoire.

The flamenco dancer who worked with me on this event and indeed who is often my first choice was superlative. She felt inspired by the atmosphere and she danced so well. I will add photos but wish I also had a short video clip of her dancing on that evening. On another occasion, I will try to make sure that I get a recording of some of the performance.

For now we have a very happy memory of being hired to perform flamenco for this Spanish event and hope that the memory is shared by those people present.

Flamenco Show Stroke Victim Support Kilpin East Yorkshire

Together with my flamenco dancer Rocio I provided a performance of Flamenco Dance and Guitar Solos.

This event was organised partly to raise funds for Stroke Victim Support with specific reference to the East Riding of Yorkshire.

However it was also evident that the organisers had real knowledge about Spain, Spanish history and culture and spoke Spanish. They produced a very complete programme full of interesting facts about Spain; some serious and some amusing.

A large wooden floor area has been prepared for us with easy access to electric sockets which made setting up quick and easy.

We had been allocated two very good rooms to get changed so that aspect of our performance was also very comfortable and it meant that Rocio could get changed several times into her absolutely beautiful flamenco costumes.

Rocio was very popular and I noticed a lot of filming and photography which we were both very happy about and I hope to be able to add some of those to this blog at a later date.

Rocio was particularly impressive in her footwork or zapateado in the dances of Farruca and Fandangos and elegant in her arms or braceo in Soleares and Alegrias where she also produced some very complex zapateado patterns.

Her delicate Guajira with fan and lovely light coloured costume was especially well received.

In a situation like this one where there is very clearly a party atmosphere you do not anticipate that the audience will pay a lot of attention to the guitar solos and you accept that these will be background music while people eat and chat.

I was therefore so very happy when I noticed a number of people watching my compositions carefully, some filming and very genuine applause at the end of each piece. I tried to vary between the more gentle slower pieces and the more showy impressive pieces.

Rocio joined me for duets of guitar and castanets and of course people find this combination quite intriguing.

In addition to our large changing rooms the organisers had provided us with a very comfortable beautifully decorated rest area with a table of food for us for our intervals.

The night before we had performed in Hertfordshire and driven up to Yorkshire where a special Hotel arrangement awaited us.

All of this careful planning and concern for our comfort meant that we were able to give out full attention to our work and try to give the best performance we could.

We both have a very lovely memory of our time at Kilpin, East Yorkshire.

 

 

 

 

Paso Fino Horse Flamenco Dancing and Guitar Norton Heath Equestrian Centre

I provided a performance of Flamenco Dance, Castanets and Guitar for the presentation of the Paso Fino horse at the Norton Heath Equestrian Centre.

At first we were both a little scared of working in close proximity to horses but as we got involved it became one of the most delightful performances that we have given.

The Paso Fino horse is special and I guess you could say that about all breeds of horse each in their own way.

The Paso Fino is a small horse with a gentle nature and walks with small steps, hence the name Paso Fino or Fine Step. The horse riders took their Fino horses along a passage of wood flooring and this meant that we could hear the horses little steps like a percussive instrument.

We understood then why the horse owners wanted to have flamenco dancing at the presentation.

What was different was that we did not play for a dinner after the event but instead were right in the enclosure on the sand.

The horse made its steps down the wooden passage and then my dancer Rocio imitated or answered the steps with her own footwork on her wooden boards. What impresses me a great deal about Rocio is the way that she becomes absolutely involved with the situation. We had very little time to rehearse and yet she created perfect percussive footwork responses to the sound of the Paso Fino.

But as her own spontaneous creation she did something that I found quite lovely: once the horse has completed its passage the rider takes in round to start again but in contrast everything is most quiet and during these moments Rocio created a delicate display with her large Spanish dance shawl or Manton as we call it. I think all present felt that she had perfectly understood the atmosphere and was in tune with the rider and the horse.

In each passage the horse seemed to sound a little different especially because of the variety of steps and stops and starts which again Rocio answered perfectly.

There were other moments when I played a beautiful tremolo study to accompany a non percussive display and of course there was also time for some of our castanet and guitar duets and some normal flamenco dances.

As I said at the beginning at first we were a little apprehensive but we needn’t have been.

At one point a rider brought out a much bigger horse and rode it somewhat faster around the enclosure explaining the techniques to the audience. This rider brought his horse much closer to us and very close to my amplifier and yet is was absolutely clear that he had absolute control and that the horse was going exactly where he wanted in the way he wanted.

Not being a professional writer, it is difficult to convey here the passion and beauty of that event. We came away with the feeling that we would love to work with the Paso Fino horse and riders again at another opportunity.

I will add one or two photos of Rocio at that event. They are not very well taken but are really just as a memory for us.

Flamenco Dancer Paso Fino Horse

 

Beautiful Dancer Beautiful Paso Fino

Spanish Night Black Horse Elton Peterborough

I was delighted to present a night of flamenco dance with my new dancer Rocio Gomez as well as some guitar and castanet duets and some guitar solos for the Spanish night at the Black Horse pub in Elton Peterborough.

The whole evening was very well organised and the managers had purchased a large sheet of plywood which they fixed to the floor so that Rocio’s wonderful footwork could be fully heard.

We were in a special area but they had organsised the tables in such a way that all of the diners could see the show.

Rocio does not like rehearsing very much and she does not like to pre arrange set choreographies. Rather she likes to work with the inspiration that she feels at each event. Had this been just another Spanish paella night at a pub perhaps she might not have felt especially inspired but this was not the case.

From the moment that we arrived you could feel a kind of buzz. There were professional waiting staff who were being carefully directed by the managers to ensure that each person knew where they had to be and what they had to get done.  They were also very well turned out which I think matters in the same way that our professional costumes matter.

It shows the clients that the event is being taken seriously and managed with care.

Rocio certainly did feel inspired and impressed the diners with her opening dance of Fandangos in which she produces flamenco counterpoint percussive rhythms using her hand clapping and feet in combinations.

She also built a great crescendo with her footwork in Farruca and the delicacy of her dance style in Alegrias was much appreciated and I imagine that might be because delicate flamenco dancing is perhaps so well known.

Guitar and castanet duets included Sevillanas and Colombiana and I played a number of solos which gave Rocio time to change into her various beautiful costumes.

The people were all wonderfully appreciative and asked to have photos taken together with Rocio.

I was very happy with how the whole evening went and finally there was a small detail but that was touching.

Any musician who plays around eating venues can tell you that sometimes you have to seek the person who pays you at the end.

That was not my case as payment is done at a later date so I just packed everything up into the car and was ready to leave when one of the waitresses came out and quickly followed us to the car park and was concerned that we had not been paid and wanted us to come back to get paid.

I explained that it would all be taken care of but I went away thinking that the management and staff at the Black Horse in Elton really make sure that they get it all right on the night.

Here are some photos of that event:

Flamenco Guitarist and Dancer Spanish Event     

 

Tapas Night Flamenco Show

 

 

 

Paco de Lucia and Paco Pena Music in St. Albans

I had the exceptional pleasure of performing a recital of music by Paco de Lucia and  Paco Pena or to spell in Spanish Paco de Lucía and Paco Peña for a private event in St. Albans.

Sometimes quite unexpected things happen.

I was booked to play flamenco guitar music for a private event in St. Albans and at first I thought it would be alright because it always is.

People who hire me to play flamenco guitar music at their events generally know that they are booking.

These clients knew rather more!  You can read the e mails that I received from them on my Testimonials page in Maroon colour. Also they posted reviews of the event on my Last Minute Musicians profile.

They were a couple who had visited Andalucia several times and had made a point of looking out for authentic flamenco.

They told me that they particularly liked Paco de Lucia and Paco Pena and this was exciting news.

It gave me the opportunity to play the music that I really love.

I was very pleased at the reactions I received.

One of the guests had seen Paco Pena live at his first concert in Brighton and she recognised the pieces that I played.

For me and perhaps for any musician it is very rewarding when we can see that our music is meaningful to our listeners.

Another guest I noticed was very in tune with the rhythm and feeling of the pieces.

Many years ago when Paco Pena first started playing in Britain and in other countries outside of Spain I think it was somewhat more difficult. Quite naturally people did not understand the ‘language’ of flamenco but a great deal has happened over the years in terms of people becoming more familiar with a variety of musical expressions.

I am indebted to Paco Pena for his pioneering work that has paved the way flamenco guitarists to play traditional authentic flamenco guitar music and be understood outside of Spain.

After the event I heard that there were some guitarists present and that might explain why some guests seem to pay a great deal of attention. This never puts me off in the slightest; I love that there are guitarists present as indeed any music lovers.

It was a wonderful experience for me to play all my favourite flamenco pieces for a great audience.

Spanish Guitar Tapas Night White Hart Fyfield Oxfordshire

I was very pleased to play Spanish Flamenco and Classical Guitar music for the Tapas Night at the White Hart in Fyfield, Oxfordshire.

By following the mood throughout the evening I was able to select pieces from my repertoire to provide music that was appropriate as the evening developed.

Untypically I started quite energetically. There were a few diners in the first 20 minutes, they were friendly and very well disposed to having live music from a guitarist.

So, I began by playing happy celebratory flamenco styles such as Colombiana, Guajira and Rumba which are all of South American origin and then following with Alegrias, Zapateado and Fandangos which are all from Andalucia.

A little later I went upstairs to the gallery which is quite small and intimate so I felt it best to play some quiet Classical pieces and chose Capricho Arabe and Recuerdos de La Alhambra, both by Francisco Tarrega and then Romance Anonimo which as its name suggests is anonymous but certainly has been very much enjoyed by audiences all over the world for many years.

After my second break and having played in all the main dining areas I moved to the bar area which had all the  tables taken with diners.

I played the Romance Anonimo again and was delighted that one diner recognised it as her song. In contrast I played two rather fast Rumbas which were much enjoyed and I was touched by the very generous tip from another diner. It is very good to know that the music I am playing is really being enjoyed and such gestures confirm that.

I returned to the main hall to play Asturias by Isaac Albeniz and several flamenco pieces such as Bulerias, Tientos, Cantinas and Alegrias de Cordoba.

People go out to have diner and not to listen in silence to a guitar recital and that is the way it should be. I am always careful to make sure that the music is of a high standard as in concert because people have a right to expect quality in music as they do with the food.

On this point the chef at the White Hart very kindly provided me with a rather spectacular dinner of several dishes, all of which were unique, interesting and I am  sorry to say that I do not have refined manners; I left nothing on the plates!

It was a very pleasant evening for me and I hope that my Spanish Flamenco and Classical Guitar playing left a favourable impression on the diners.

 

Hire a Spanish Flamenco Guitarist

 

 

 

 

Flamenco Birthday Party Spanish Themed

I provided a performance of Solo Flamenco Guitar playing, duets and Castanets and Flamenco Dancing for a Spanish Themed Birthday Party.

The organisers of the party as well as the man celebrating his birthday had all lived in Spain and spoke Spanish very well.

As it was a big celebration they decided to book a Flamenco Act.

They held the event in their garden but instead of grass they have decking elevated to create a stage and further attached good quality wood to the decking which was important for the sound of the dancer’s footwork.

They also organised comfortable seating for their guests so that they could all watch the flamenco as a performance, rather than simply being in the background.

Sometimes keeping the music in the background is the right thing to do but it was lovely for us to perform in a setting that was very similar to the traditional flamenco night in Spain.

We performed several pieces from the serious flamenco repertoire such as Zambra, Soleares, Tientos, Seguiriyas, Granainas and it was wonderful that the guests listened and watched in practical silence. There is absolutely no need to do that at a garden party but it felt very rewarding that they enjoyed our performance so much.

We naturally also performed several of the lighter flamenco styles such as Alegrias, Colombiana, Guajira, Zapateado, Garrotin and the gentleman celebrating his birthday joined in for the dance of Sevillanas. The way he followed the dancer with her steps suggests to me that he must have enjoyed Spanish culture in his time in Spain.

It is absolutely considered right in Spain to join in with Sevillanas regardless of your level or experience in Flamenco dance. The idea in traditional Flamenco is not to compete but to enjoy the dancing experience and no one is interested in who dances best or who is still learning.

I am told that the host spent the whole week cooking and preparing food and this was evident from the quantity and quality of the dinner.

I received kind help from a neighbour with the lone of an extension lead which made it possible to position my amplifier in exactly the right place for optimum sound.

The whole evening was a very happy experience and we were very pleased to perform for this event.

Here are some photos:

 

Spanish Themed Flamenco Dance

Spanish Event Flamenco Dance

Flamenco Dancing Headington Festival Oxford

The organisers of the Headington Festival in Oxford approached the fabulous flamenco dancer, Laura to ask her if she could provide a performance of flamenco dance for the festival on Saturday 3rd June 2017.

They already knew of her high standard of flamenco dancing from her previous performances.

Laura said that she could and then approached me to ask if I would accompany her. Needless to say I was delighted to do so.

It was an absolutely beautiful day with radiant sunshine. We were set up in the street and were grateful for such good weather.

The festival organisers had supplied amplification and microphone and I was most grateful to sound engineer Juan Manuel who was on hand the whole time to adjust the microphone and loud speakers. Having a good sound without feedback is vital to a good performance.

This flamenco performance focused on Laura’s dancing and she danced her delightful Alegrias, her exhilarating Tangos and well as Fandangos, Sevillanas and Rumba.

At one point another Spanish flamenco dancer who lives in Oxford passed by and joined Laura for the Sevillanas. For the guitarist that is a challenge but also inspiring.

The difficulty is that if you have never met a dancer before you do not know what to expect and straight into performance without any kind of rehearsal means that you have to pay maximum attention to both dancers.

The joy is that this kind of spontaneity keeps flamenco vibrant and alive. There certainly is a place for the well choreographed flamenco show but there is also a place for the unexpected immediaccy in flamenco.

On this note Laura spotted a little girl who had been watching intently and fascinated by the flamenco dance.

Laura asked me to change the programme order and to play a Rumba so that she could invite the child to join in and indeed she did. I think it was wonderful not just for the child’s mother but for the whole crowd there to see how this little girl went straight for it and very successfully followed all of Laura’s moves.

Throughout the programme Laura also played some wonderful duets with my guitar playing for Sevillanas and Colombiana and gave me some very good palmas to accompany my Bulerias.

The crowd that gathered was wonderful and I was impressed with how attentive they were especially as one would not necessarily expect that is a street show.

We are both grateful to the organisers for giving us this performance space and the Master of Ceremonies for his kind words.

With the beautiful summer sun for that day it was as if Headington, Oxford was in Andalucia, Spain.