The annual Flamenco Festival has become one of the highlights of Sadler's Wells' season. Every year it offers London the best of Andalucia's music and dance, both in its traditional formats and in its more challenging contemporary varieties, which seek to find new avenues for this unique art form. Here is Culture Whisper's selection:
One novelty this year is the format of the Gala Flamenca: Wednesday 14 June, 7:30pm; Thursday 15 June at 3pm & 7:30pm, Sadler's Wells Theatre. Dur.: 1 hour 20 mins no interval.
For the first time, it will be an all-male affair, bringing together established and up-and-coming names specialising in different formats. Manuel Liñan, whose show was one of the hits of last year's festival, is known for subverting flamenco gender roles. He is joined by another maverick of the genre, Alfonso de Losa. Also in the programme are rising star Miguel Fernández Ribas, known as El Yiyo, and the legendary 83-year-old Carrete de Málaga, known as 'the Fred Astaire of flamenco'.
Liñan returns with his own show, Muerta de Amor, on Wednesday 12 July, 6pm in the Lilian Baylis Studio. Dur.: 1 hour
Also not to be missed is Ballet Flamenco Sara Baras, Alma: Wednesday 5 – Sunday 9 July, 7:30pm, Sunday 9 July mat at 3pm, Sadler's Wells Theatre. Dur.: 2 hours no interval
Multi-award-winner Sara Baras (pictured top) is one of the key names of contemporary flamenco and a regular at Sadler's Wells. A spectacular technician, she has a particular skill for combining traditional and contemporary into thrilling programmes. This year's show, Alma, brings together flamenco in all its varieties and bolero.
Olga Pericet, Tuesday 11 July, 7:30pm, Sadler's Wells. Dur.: 1 hour 10 mins no interval
Olga Pericet, La Leona. Photo: Paco Villalta
Pericet is more of a hit-and-miss performer. Definitely an innovator, her new show, called La Leona (the Lioness), is billed as combining 'theatre and dance in a poetic and surreal world filled with imagery that evokes Westerns, wakes and the stars.' Make of that what you will…
Estévez & Paños, La Confluencia is another all-male show: Wednesday 12 July, 7:30pm, Sadler's Wells. Dur.: 1 hour 20 mins no interval
Five performers and a live soundscape explore the the roots of flamenco codes in the various rich cultures of the Iberian Peninsula.
Mercedes de Córdoba, Si, Quiero: Thursday 13 July, 7:30pm, Sadler's Wells. Dur.: 1 hour 30 mins no interval
Mercedes de Córdoba, Si, Quiero. Photo: Beatrix Mexi Molnar
New to the festival, Córdoba and her cast of female dancers enact a wedding ceremony that alternates between calm and passion, hope and madness.
The LIlian Baylis Studio will host a series of intimate guitar concerts, featuring, among others, one of the great masters of flamenco guitar, Rafael Riqueni, with his show Herencia.
For two weeks the Flamenco Festival 2023 will pack both Sadler's Wells theatres with glorious music and dancing, offering something for every taste. Don't miss it!
|What||Flamenco Festival 2023, Sadler's Wells|
|Where||Sadler's Wells, Rosebery Avenue, London, EC1R 4TN | MAP|
|Nearest tube||Angel (underground)|
05 Jul 23 – 15 Jul 23, Starting times and dur. vary according to programme
|Price||£15–£75 (+booking fee)|
|Website||Click here to book|