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 had 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.