Silvia Moreno Seville


Updated Friday, March 1, 2024-21:43

  • Tour The National Ballet of Spain returns to the US with its flamenco 'Invocation'

  • Flamenco The international public, flamenco's lifeline: "We are sustained by demand from abroad"

More than two decades ago, when

Miguel Marín

(Carcabuey, Córdoba), director of the

New York Flamenco Festival

, toured the big theaters of the Big Apple with a folder under his arm with the names of the flamenco artists he wanted to take to the stage. New Yorkers, the American programmers twisted their faces and insisted that he bring the

"more racial"

flamenco to the stage and that it be in abundance.

"At first, the directors of the big theaters in New York asked us for a quantity, but how many artists are there on stage?" Marín recalls.

They were the origins of the New York Flamenco Festival, which this year celebrates, between March 1 and 17, its twenty-third edition, in which the Spanish

guitar and

Paco de Lucía

will be honored

, precisely when it turns ten years old. of his death and 17 of his last performance in the Big Apple, during the 2007 Flamenco Festival.

Sara Baras and Antonio Canales, in New York in 2003, when they performed at the Flamenco Festival.Eduardo AbadEfe

In recent years, New York programmers and audiences have become familiar with


art , to the point that they already know some artists and are waiting for the premieres of their shows.

Racial flamenco is no longer requested and quantity has given way to quality and also to the

more contemporary proposals

that they do know how to distinguish and appreciate in the city of skyscrapers.

"In recent years there has been a great evolution, both in the theater directors and in the public. At the New York Flamenco Festival, people do not now come to see white

-label flamenco

, but rather an author's one or the new work of a artist they already know. The New York public

seeks art and culture

at its best," explains Marín.

-But how can flamenco capture the public in the United States? What sensitive chord does it touch on you?

- People look for truth and authenticity, more than entertainment.

When the artist expresses his truth honestly, it reaches here and anywhere in the world.

A hundred pages in The New York Times

But in a city "so monstrous on a cultural level" like New York - Marín admits - in which the

best musicals

in the world, plays, concerts are programmed... it is difficult for a flamenco festival to find its place and be make your way among so many proposals.

But the director of the Flamenco Festival seems to have hit the nail on the head.

The New York Times


has dedicated no less than 101 pages to this contest from the first edition until now.

The prestigious newspaper describes the event as "one of the main

dance events

in the city."

Miguel Marín, in the front row, between Marina Heredia and Carmen Linares, with other flamenco artists, including Rosalía, in 2018.Luis Camacho

Taking a look at its newspaper archive, you can see the extensive coverage, years ago, of the shows by


, María Pagés, Carmen Linares, Eva Yerbabuena, Paco de Lucía,

Sara Baras

, Tomatito or

Enrique Morente


"Mission accomplished: flamenco arrives in the new world,"

The New York Times

titled its report on the first edition of the festival in 2001.

Then came headlines such as "The rhythm of flamenco conquers the hearts of Americans" and others that refer to the "fire", the "soul" and the "anarchic side" of


art .

By the way, the singer


went completely unnoticed by

The New York Times

when she performed there in March 2018 with the festival, in her most flamenco stage.

However, a year and a half later, the newspaper made a great display of the Catalan singer, who was

on the cover

of the cultural supplement with this title: "Rosalía's incredible journey: from flamenco to mega-star."

It is expected that, in this edition, some

20,600 people

will attend the shows scheduled in New York and 16,800 will attend the rest of the cities in the United States where flamenco artists passing through the Big Apple will perform.

The other cities on the tour are


, Boston,

Los Angeles

, Chicago and Washington DC.

19 companies will perform, offering 44 performances.

The event in New York has aroused so much enthusiasm that, in 2022, during the


of the Manuel Liñán

National Dance Award

- in which the dancer and choreographer breaks the corsets of flamenco with an allegation about


- part of the audience came to the theater in tune with the work they were going to witness.

The public, delivered

"What a joy to see

American boys in Rocío skirts

in the audience !" Marín recalls.



, the dancers come on stage dressed in women's flamenco costumes and explore the universe of



"It is common for women to come to the shows with a

small shawl

, but the thing about the boys with the Rociera skirt was a surprise and a joy," recalls Marín.

In the competition, the most veteran and established flamenco artists alternate with young people who are pushing hard.

This year's edition was inaugurated on March 1 by Almería guitarist


at the emblematic Town Hall in New York, the same stage where maestro


(Agustín Castellón Campos, considered the driving force behind the internationalization of flamenco) presented in 1959 the first flamenco guitar recital in history.

Rafael Riqueni

will also be present

, the virtuoso Sevillian guitarist who will perform his


show on March 7.

Other guitarists who will participate in the festival are Alejandro Hurtado, Raúl Cantizano, Rycardo Moreno, Antonia Jiménez,

Diego del Morao

and David de Arahal.

Also performing in New York are the

National Ballet of Spain

, the winners of the Latin Grammy for best flamenco album 2022

Las Migas

and the dancers and choreographers

Olga Pericet

, Manuel Liñán, Alfonso Losa, Paula Comitre and Concha Jareño.

The singers

Israel Fernández


María José Llergo

, Inma La Carbonera, Sandra Carrasco and Los Voluble will also take to the stages of the Big Apple.

In total, more than 150 Spanish artists will travel to New York with the Flamenco Festival.

There are many, but it has been years since theater directors have asked how many flamencos are going to appear on stage.

At once.